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Orange Muscat

It’s not easy to find a fortified orange muscat wine. That’s because the white-wine grapes, which are a sub-varietal of the muscat family of grapes, are quite rare.

Today, orange muscat grapes are grown mostly in Australia, Washington, and California, but are thought to have originated in France and Italy. Orange muscat is also one of the world’s oldest wine grapes, dating back to the Middle East as well as ancient Greece.

An orange aroma accompanies a glass of full-bodied orange muscat, typically sipped as an after-dinner drink or with a rich dessert. It also goes well with a cheese plate. The profile of orange muscat can be either sweet or dry. Notes of honeyed fruit, apricots, oranges, nectarines, and pears are commonly in the wine’s profile, with an overall sense of fruit nectar.

Quick Facts

  • Orange muscat is sometimes used as an ingredient in cocktails instead of liqueur, as well as in salad dressings
  • In Italy, orange muscat is used to make passito, a dessert-style wine
  • Quady Winery in California’s San Joaquin Valley continually earns high scores for its Essencia wine made from orange muscat grapes

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