The ultimate guide to white wine varieties

Finding it tricky to navigate the wonderful world of white wine? We get it. There’s an endless array of varietals and styles that range from light to heavy-bodied, sweet to dry, crisp to creamy, fruity to grassy… and everything in between!

To make things easy for you, we’ve categorised our most popular white wine varietals into four key types. You can select based on your taste preferences or based on the meal you’ll be pairing it with.

Choose the perfect white wine for you

categories of white wine based on flavour and body


Bold and Dry

If you're not in the mood for red, but still want a wine with some weight and body, a bold and dry white wine might hit the spot. These wines have an intense flavour and rich mouthfeel often brought about with oak ageing. They are a fantastic match for hearty and comforting dishes like pasta with cream sauce, mushroom risotto, chicken and leek pie, lobster mornay, or classic roast pork with winter veggies. 



Popular all over the world, Chardonnay is a full-bodied white wine known for its luscious, buttery mouthfeel. The ageing in oak barrels gives the wine nutty and vanilla aromas which are balanced with the zesty flavours of green apple, citrus and stonefruit.  

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Like Chardonnay, Semillon is loved for its full body and bone-dry character. The Hunter Valley is world-famous for its crisp, linear Semillons. Tempus Two Semillons produced here have heady aromas of citrus and white peach and have a rich palate with a persistent mineral finish.  

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Fiano is an ancient white grape with Italian origins. Big and bold with bright acidity, Fiano’s palate is textured, fruit-forward and waxy. Its nutty and textured characters balanced with tropical fruity richness and floral notes make it a truly captivating drop. 

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Herbaceous white wines are light-bodied, crisp and vivacious and the ultimate pairing for a summer barbecue or a fabulous evening of alfresco dining. With aromas of freshly cut grass and tasting of crisp green capsicum and peaches, the acidity in these wines make them heavenly with zesty salads, grilled white meat, Asian-inspired dishes with tangy, herby flavours, and sushi.  


Sauvignon Blanc 

Sauvignon Blanc is Australia’s most popular white wine varietal. It’s an elegant, vibrant wine with notes of citrus, tropical fruit and herbs. It is an excellent all-rounder that works well as a go-to wine if you’re not sure what to bring to a dinner party.   

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Tempus Two wine white with lemons and a salmon bowl

Light and Dry 


Pinot Grigio 

Pinot Grigio or Pinot Gris wines are light, crisp, and fruity with mineral or citrus notes. It’s easy-drinking and refreshing nature make it the perfect varietal for those who are just exploring the world of white wine.  

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Semillon Sauvignon Blanc 

The characteristics of these two white grape varieties complement each other wonderfully when blended together. The Sauvignon Blanc brings vibrant fruit flavours and acidity, while Semillon adds body, texture and complexity. The result is a bright and aromatic wine with a juicy, zesty palate and refreshing length. 

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Light and Sweet

Light and sweet white wine varietals, like Riesling or Moscato, have just a hint of residual sugar from the grapes and are very aromatic. Try them alongside appetisers or desserts, or with Spicy Indian or Asian dishes for an exceptional food pairing experience. 


Moscato, made from the Muscat grape, is a sweet, fizzy wine with a low alcohol content that is easy and fun to drink. Designed to be enjoyed young, it’s often described as a glass of fruit tingles. Moscato typically has a musky aroma and features flavours of sweet fruit including peach, kiwi fruit and pineapple.  

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White Wine FAQ


How do I serve and store white wine? 

Full-bodied white wines or those aged in oak should be served just lightly chilled at 10-1 degrees celsius. Lighter white wines are better served chilled at 7-10 degrees celsius.   

White wine should be kept in a cool, dry place away from excessive vibration, heat and light.  


How long should I keep white wine? 

Unopened, white wine should last anywhere between 18 months and two years when stored in the right conditions. An open should last around five in the fridge.