Riesling vs Moscato: Know the Difference

When it comes to white wines, there are many different options to choose from, including the two aromatic wines Riesling and Moscato, which both tend to have sweet versions accessible to those who don’t like dry or tannic wines. Both wines are popular among wine lovers, but there are significant differences between them. Additionally, there are also different types of Moscato, including still and sparkling varieties, which add another layer to the comparison. Let’s delve into the differences between Riesling and Moscato, as well as the differences between still and sparkling Moscato, all of which you can get at the best online wine store. 

Origins of Riesling and Moscato 

Riesling is a white grape variety grown in many different parts of the world, with great examples from Germany, Alsace, New York’s Finger Lakes, and the US Pacific coast. It is known for its crisp acidity, fruity flavor profile, and versatility. You will find a variety of styles in the white wine bottle with a Riesling label, ranging from dry to sweet. Moscato, in contrast, is made from the extremely ancient Muscat grape and is known for its sweet and fruity flavor profile. It is typically produced in a sweet or semi-sweet style, although some drier versions of Moscato exist. 

One of the main differences between Riesling and Moscato is their flavor profile. Riesling is known for its complex flavor profile, which can include notes of citrus, peach, and apricot, as well as a distinct mineral taste, whether dry, semi-dry, or sweet. Moscato, on the other hand, has gained attention for its sweetness and fruitier aromas, which often includes notes of peach, apricot, and honey. While both wines can be paired with a variety of foods, their distinct flavor profiles mean that each may pair better with different dishes. 

Another key difference between Riesling and Moscato is their alcohol content, important to now when you buy white wine online. Riesling typically has a higher alcohol content than Moscato, with levels ranging from 7.5% to 13.5%. Moscato, on the other hand, typically has an alcohol content of around 5% to 9%. One reason is because sparkling Moscato is often produced using the Charmat method, which is a less labor-intensive process that results in a lower alcohol content. Riesling, on the other hand, is often produced using the traditional method, which involves aging the wine in oak barrels for a longer period, resulting in a higher alcohol content. 

When it comes to still Moscato, the wine is typically produced using the same methods as sparkling Moscato, but it is not carbonated. This means that still Moscato has a more straightforward flavor profile than sparkling Moscato. Still Moscato is known for its sweet, fruity flavor profile, which makes it a popular choice for pairing with desserts and cheese, or for those new to wine. 

Sparkling Moscato, by contrast, is made using the Charmat method (as opposed to the tractional Champagne method with a second fermentation in the bottle). This method involves fermenting the wine in large stainless steel tanks, which results in a light, bubbly wine with a lower alcohol content. Sparkling Moscato is known for its sweet and fruity flavor profile, as well as its light, effervescent mouthfeel. It is often compared to other sparkling wines, such as Prosecco and Champagne, and is a popular choice for celebrations and special occasions. 

Food Pairing with Riesling and Moscato 

When it comes to food pairings, Riesling is a versatile wine that can be paired with a variety of dishes, including seafood, spicy foods, and Asian cuisine. Moscato, on the other hand, is often paired with desserts and cheese. Still Moscato pairs well with sweet desserts and fruit, while sparkling Moscato can also be paired with salty or savory foods, such as charcuterie boards and appetizers. 

So, go ahead, buy wine online, both Riesling and Moscato, and compare the two!

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