Russia: Vine varieties

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

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The varietal assortment of Russia’s vineyards is extremely diverse, with over 100 varieties allowed for commercial cultivation. Depending on the region, 70 to 85% of vineyards are planted to wine grapes, with table grapes accounting for 15 to 30% of the total vineyard area. Among wine grapes cultivated in all viticultural regions of Russia, the most common, comprising almost half of all plantings, are Cabernet Sauvignon and the varieties most commonly grown for sparkling wines—the Pinots, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Riesling. Also planted are Aligoté, Traminer, Muscats, Saperavi, Merlot, the local red wine grape Tsimlyansky Cherny (Black), and the Soviet interspecific hybrids Pervenets Magaracha, Moldova, and Augustin.