Your Wine IQ

Savagnin


International Varieties: Chardonnay   Gewürztraminer   Muscat   Pinot Gris   Riesling   Sauvignon Blanc

Major Varieties:   Airén    Chenin Blanc    Grüner Veltliner    Müller-Thurgau    Pinot Blanc    Sémillon    Silvaner    Trebbiano    Viognier

Regional Varieties:   Albariño    Aligoté    Amigne    Arneis    Chasselas    Colombard    Cortese    Fiano    Grechetto    Grenache Blanc    Malvasia Istriana    Marsanne    Muscadelle    Muscat of Alexandria    Ortega    Palomino    Parellada    Petite Arvine    Prosecco    Rieslaner    Roussanne    Savagnin    Scheurebe    Seyval Blanc    Tocai Friulano    Torrontés    Vermentino    Welschriesling


Finicky, low-yielding grape Savagnin is primarily known for its use in vin jaune. The grape evolved over time to become the primary ingredient in the nutty, idiosyncratic vin jaune, a style of wine made entirely in the Jura region of France.

Famous in France but still relatively obscure in other countries, vin jaune is a non-fortified wine that goes through a complicated process that turns it yellow and brings out very distinctive flavors. The wine is bottled in an unusually shaped container that does not meet US regulations for wine bottles. Savagnin is also used in vin de paille, or raisin wine. Also known as straw wine, vin de paille is made from grapes that are aged on straw mats for several months.

Savagnin is also used in other, less colorful wines. Savagnin is planted for dry wines in the Savoie, where it makes table and sparkling wines. There are plantings in Germany, although there are identification issues. Switzerland, especially the Alps, has plantings. The most prominent plantings outside of France, though, are in Australia, where they have been mislabeled for years as Albariño!