Of course, Europe also has its fair share of great dessert wines, including the most famous of them all, Château d’YQuem, which can fetch some eye-watering prices for some of the rarest vintages. Expect to find a good selection of Château d’YQuem wines at Aelia’s Buy Paris Duty Free outlets at Paris Charles de Gaulle
and Paris Orly
airports along with a selection of less expensive Sauternes sweet wines.
If France has its Sauternes white wines to boast about, Hungary has its Tokaji, another famous European sweet white wine made from grapes which are left long enough on the vine to develop what is called “noble rot”, a type of mould which concentrates the grapes’ natural sugars. Don’t let all this talk of mould put out off. Tokaji wines are fabulous and at Budapest
airport’s new Skycourt international terminal travellers will find an excellent selection of rare Tokaji wines with vintages dating back as far as 1940.
Germany is rightly now famous for the quality of its white wines, which tend to be light and fruity with a relatively low alcohol content because of the country’s cool northerly climate. Wine critics used to slate bargain bucket German wines such as the infamous Blue Nun for being sweet and one-dimensional, but the quality and variety of the country’s wines has greatly increased in the past two decades.
Riesling is the grape varietal most associated with German wines but pinot blanc and pinot gris have gained enormously in popularity in the past few years. For one of the best selection of German white wines at an airport head to Gebr. Heinemann’s shops at Frankfurt airport Terminal 1B. The wood-panelled Regionals zone stocks a wide range of Mosel wines. Prices start as low as €6.30 (£5) and as high as €210 (£166.50) for a bottle of eiswein, Germany’s equivalent of ice wine. See http://www.heinemann-dutyfree.com/frankfurt_en/wine-champagne/white-wine
to have a look at the full selection.
We can’t leave the subject of white wine in travel-retail without mentioning New Zealand, which is world famous for producing some of the best sauvignon blanc wines anywhere on the planet. Light and crisp with floral and classically grassy notes, Kiwi whites are the perfect refreshing drink for hot summer days.
Sauvignon blanc accounts for nearly half of all the wines the country produces and travellers can find a decent selection of them at JR Duty Free’s shops at both Auckland
international airports. Popular Kiwi white wine labels stocked include Oyster Bay, Stoneleigh Bay, Villa Maria and Martinborough Vineyard with prices ranging from NZ$13-62 (£6.60-31.70). To browse the full range visit http://www.jrdutyfree.co.nz/category/WHITE+WINE?sort=price&order=desc
Of course, in this short article we can only scratch the surface of the many different white wines that you will find at airports worldwide. In fact, every great wine-producing country of the world boasts some excellent white wines. So if your default wine setting is red, why not give white a try?
The chances are you won’t be disappointed.