Pronunciation Guide to Wine Terms

You not only are what you drink, you are how you say it! Here’s a guide for English speakers to the approximate pronunciation of some foreign wine terms that are either commonly mispronounced, or just plain difficult. Stressed syllables are indicated by capital letters. (Note that French words are not syllabically stressed, unlike Italian, Spanish, & German, which are. Also, where some pronunciation guides suggest pronouncing, for example, the word Adega as ah DAY gah, that is actually incorrect; it should be ah DEH gah, without the diphthong so common in English, SAY, YAY, etc. The EH indicates a pronunciation more like the e in enough—eh NUFF.) If you can trill a Spanish R, then you can get closer to the way the terms are pronounced–at least for German, Italian, and Portuguese; the French R is different, as it is voiced in the back of the throat, but a trilled R will do in a pinch.

A
Adega ah DEH gah
Agiorghitiko ah yor YEE ti ko
Aglianico del Vulture ah lee AHN ee coh dell Vool TOOR eh
Ahr AHR
Albariño ahl bah REE nyoh
Aligoté ah lee go teh
Aloxe-Corton ah luss cor ton
Alsace al zass
Alto-Adige AHL toh AH dee jheh
Amontillado ah mon tee YAH doh
Amarone ah ma ROH neh
Anjou ahn jew
Appellation d‘Origine Contrôlée ap el latz ee on dor ee jheen con trol eh
Arneis ahr NASE
Auslese OUSE leh zeh
Auxerrois aus ser whah
Auxey-Duresses awk seh deh ress,
B
Baden BAH den
Barbaresco bar bah RES co
Barbera bar BEAR ah
Bardolino bar doe LEE noh
Barolo bah RO lo
Bâtard-Montrachet bah tar – mon rah sheh
Beaujolais boh jho lay
Beaujolais Nouveau boh jho lay noo voh
Beaujolais-Villages boh jho lay vee lahj
Beaune bohn
Beerenauslese BEHR en OUSE leh she
Blanc de Blancs blahnk duh blahnk
Blanc de Noir blahnk duh nwahr
Blanchot blahn shoh
Botrytis cinerea boh TRY tis sin eh REH ah
Bougros boo groh
Bourgogne boor guh nyeh
Bourgueil bor goye
Brouilly broo yee
Brunello di Montalcino brew NEL lo dee mon tahl CHEE no
brut brute
Burgenland BURR ghen land
C
Cabernet Franc cah behr neh frahnk
Cabernet Sauvignon cah behr neh saw vee nyoh
Canaiolo can eye OH loh
Carmignano car mee NYAH no
Carmenere car men err
Chablis shah blee
Chambolle-Musigny shom bohl – moo sih nyee
Chardonnay SHAR doh nay
Chassagne-Montrachet shah san yuh – mon rah sheh
Château shah toh
Château de Fieuzal shah toh fee oo zahl
Château Grillet shah toh gree yeh
Château Haut-Brion shah toh oh bree oan
Château Lafite-Rothschild shah toh lah feet roth sheeld
Château Margaux shah toh mahr go
Château Mouton-Rothschild shah toh moo tahn roth sheeld
Château Pétrus shah toh peh troos
Château Trotanoy shah toh trot ahn wah
Château Y shah toh ee grehk
Châteauneuf-du-Pape shah toh nuf dew pahp
Chassagne-Montrachet shahs anyuh mohn rah sheh
Chénas sheh nahs
Chenin Blanc shen in blahnk
Chevalier-Montrachet sheh vah lyeh – mon rah sheh
Chianti key AHN tee
Chianti Rufina key AHN tee ROO fee nah
Chinon she nohn
Chiroubles sheh roob leh
Chorey-lès-Beaune shor ay – leh – bone
Colheita col YAY tah
Colli Orientali CO lee or ee en TAH lee
Collio CO lee oh
Condrieu cohn dree oo
Corbières cor bee air
Corton-Charlemagne cor tawn – shahr luh mahn
Cosecha coh SEH cha
Côte be Beaune coat deh bone
Côte Chalonnaise coat shal oh naze
Côte d’Or coat dor
Côte de Nuits coat deh nwee
Côte de Nuits-Villages coat deh nwee – vee lahj
Cote du Rhone coat deh rone
Côte Rôtie coat roe tee
Côtes du Ventoux coat due vahn too
Crianza cree AHN zah
Cru Bourgeois crew bour zjwah
cuvée coo veh
D
Dégorgement deh gorge mohn
Demi-sec deh mee seck
Denominaçao de Origen Controlada deh nom ee nah SOU deh or ee JEN con tro LAH dah
Denominazione di Origine Controllata deh nom ee NAHZ ee ohn eh dee oh REE gee neh con troh LAH tah
Dolcetto dohl CHET oh
E
Eiswein ICE vine
Entre-Deux-Mers On truh – douh – mair
Erzeugerabfüllung EHRZ oi gher ab fu long
F
Fitou fee too
Fixin fee san
Flagey-Échézeaux flah jhay -eh sheh zoe
Fleurie flehr ee
Fourchaume for chahm
Franken FRAHN ken
Friuli-Venezia Giulia FREE oo lee – veh NETZ ee ah – JOO lee ah
G
Galicia gah LEETH ee ah
Garnacha gahr NAH cha
Garrafeira gar ah FAIR ah
Gattinara gah tee NAH rah
Gavi GAH vee
Genevrières jen ev ree aire
Gevrey-Chambertin jehv ray – sham ber tan
Gewürztraminer gah VERTZ trah mee ner
Gigondas jhee gohn dahs
Givry jee vree
grand cru classé grahn crew clas seh
Graves grahv
Grenache greh nosh
Grenouilles greh n’wee
Grüner Veltliner GREW ner VELT lee ner
Gütsabfüllung GUTZ ab fu long
H
halbtrocken HAHLB tro ken
Haut-Médoc oh – meh doc
Hermitage er mee tahj
Hessische Bergstrasse HESS ish sheh BERG strahs seh
I
Indicação de Proveniência Regulamentada in dee cah SOW deh pro vee EN see ah Reh goo lah men TAH dah
J
Juliénas jool yeh nahs
Jerez de la Frontera Heh RETH deh la FRON teh rah
K
Kabinett KAB ee net
L
Ladoix lah dwah
Languedoc-Rousillon lahn gweh doc – roo see yon
Les Clos leh cloh
Les Forêts leh for eh
Les Preuses leh preuh’z
Liebfraumilch LEEB frow milsh
Lirac lee rahk
Listrac lee strahk
Loire l’wahr
Lugana loo GAH nah
M
Mâcon mah caw
Mâcon-Villages mah caw – vee lahj
Mâconnais mah caw nay
Malvasia mal va SEE ah
Maranges ma rahnj
Margaux mahr goh
Marsannay mahr sah nay
Médoc meh doc
Melon de Bourgogne meh lohn deh boor guh nyuh
Menetou-Salon meh neh too – sah lohn
Mercurey mer cure ay
Meritage MER eh tej
Meursault muhr so
Midi mee dee
Minervois mee ner vwah
Mittelrhein MIT tel ryne
moelleux mweh luh
Mont de Milieu mon deh meh lyew
Montagny mon tah nye
Montée de Tonnerre mon teh deh tun nair
Montepulciano d’Abruzzo mon teh pul chee AH noh dah BRUTE so
Monthélie mohn teh lee
Montlouis mon loo wee
Montmains mon man
Montrachet mon rah sheh
Morey-Saint Denis maw ree – san d’nee
Morgon mor gohn
Mosel-Saar-Ruwer MOH zel – zar – ROO ver
Moulin-à-Vent moo lahn ah vahn
Moulis moo lees
Müller-Thurgau MOO ler – TER gow
Muscadet moos cah deh
Muscadet Sèvre-et-Maine moos cah deh – sev’r – et – man
Muscat moos caht
Musigny moo sig n’yee
N
Nahe NAH heh
Nantais nahn teh
Nebbiolo neb bee OH lo
Neuchâtel NOI sha tel,
Niederösterreich nee der OZ ter ryke
Nuits-Saint-Georges nwee – san – johrj
O
Orvieto or vee AE toh
P
Pauillac poy yac
Pays d’Oc pay ee doc
Pays Nantais pay ee nahn tay
Penedés pen eh DAIS
Pernand-Vergelesses pair nahn – vair juh less
Pessac-Léognan peh sac – leh oh nyahn
Pfalz FALLZ
Phylloxera Fill LOX eh rah
Pinot Bianco pee noh bee AHN coh
Pinot Blanc pee noh blahnk
Pinot Grigio pee noh GREE joh
Pinot Gris pee noh gree
Pinot Meunier pee noh muhn yay
Pinotage pee noh TAHJ
Pomerol pohm eh roll
Pommard pohm mahr
Pouilly-Fuissé pwee – fwee seh
Pouilly-Fumé pwee – foo meh
Prädikat PREH di cat
premier cru prem yay crew
Priorato pree oh RAH to
Puligny-Montrachet poo lee nyee – mon rah sheh
Q
Qualitätswein KAL ee tates vine
Qualitätswein bestimmter Anbaugebiet KAL ee tates vine beh STIM ter an BAU geh beet
Quincy can see
Quinta KEEN ta
R
Regaleali reh gah leh AH lee
Regnié reh nyeh
Reuilly ruh yee
Rheingau RYNE gow
Rheinhessen RYNE hess ehn
Rheinpfaltz RYNE faults
Rhone rown
Rías Baixas REE ahse BYCE ahse
Ribera del Duero ree BEAR ah del doo EHR oh
Ribolla Gialla ree BOHL lah JAHL lah
Riesling REESE ling
Rioja ree OH hah
Rueda roo EH dah
Rully rue yee
S
Saale-Unstrut SAHL – UN strutt
Sachsen SAHCK sen
Saint-Amour sant – ah more
Saint-Aubin sant – oh ban.
Saint-Nicolas-de-Bourgueil san – nih coh lahs – deh – bor goye
Saint-Romain san – ro man
Saint-Véran san – veh rahn
Sancerre sahn sair
Sangiovese san joe VEH seh
Santenay san T’NAY
Saumur soh muhr
Sauvignon Blanc saw vee nyon blahnk
Savennières sah ven nyair
Savigny-lès-Beaune sah vee nyee – leh – bone,
Scheurebe SHOY reb beh,
Seco SEH coh
Semillon SEM eh lon (Australian)
Sémillon sem ee yon (French)
Soave so AH veh
Spanna SPAH nah
Spätburgunder SHPATE ber gund er
Spätlese SHPATE leh seh
St-Emilion sant – em eel yon
St-Estèphe sant – eh steff
St-Julien sant – jewl yen
St. Veran san vehr an
Steiermark SHTY er mark
T
Tavel tah vel
Tempranillo tem prah NEE yoh
Tinto TEEN toh
Tocai Friulano toe KYE free ou LAH noh
Torgiano tor gee AH no
Tre Venezie treh veh NETZ ee eh
Trebbiano treb bee AH noh
Trentino-Alto Adige tren TEE noh – AHL toh AH dee jheh
trocken TRO ken
Trockenbeerenauslese TROH ken BEER en OUSE leh seh
V
Vacqueyras vah keh rahs
Vaillons vye yon
Valais vah leh
Valmur vahl moor
Valpolicella val po lee CHEL lah
Vaudésir voh deh zeer
Vendange Tardive vahn dahnj tahr deev
Vendimia ven DEE me yah
Veneto VEN eh toh
Verdejo ver DEH ho
Verdicchio ver DEE key oh
Vernaccia di San Gimignano ver NOTCH cha dee san jee mee NYAH noh
Viejo vee EH ho
Viña VEEN yah
Vinho VEEN yo
Vinho Verde VEEN yo VAIR deh,
Vino Nobile di Montepulciano VEEN o NO bee leh deemon teh pul CHAH noh
Vins de pays van deh pay ee
Vins de table van deh tah bleh
Vins Délimités de Qualité Supérieure van deh lim ee teh deh kal ee teh soo per ee ehr
Viognier vee oh nyeh
Volnay vohl nay
Vosne-Romanée vohn – roh mah neh
Vougeot voo zjoe
Vouvray voo vray
W
Wachau va COW
Weissburgunder VICE bur gund er
Wien VEEN
Willamette Valley wil LAM ette
Württemberg VERT tem berg
X
Xynomavro Ksee NOH ma vro
Y
Yquem ee kem
Z
Zweigelt TSV-I gelt

7 thoughts on “Pronunciation Guide to Wine Terms

  1. Salin

    Thank you for getting this blog going. I am learning how to pronounce the French way .. Keep posting cool stuff

    Reply
  2. Pingback: Discovering Wine in University | Wine Country BC

    1. JoseM-L Post author

      I’m glad you appreciate the Pronunciation Guide, Kelly, and that you find it useful. Enjoy your time in Paris–wish I were there myself. As to a Twitter profile, I have not yet started one and I’m not even sure that I want to.

      Reply
  3. Tommie

    I think Pronunciation Guide to Wine Terms | Wine, Seriously is a well written blog article and you do a complete job of posting with good details. – Tommie

    Reply

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