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Wine is an alcoholic beverage made from the fermented juice of fruit, usually grapes. There are four broad categories: table wines, sparkling wines, fortified wines, and fruit wines. Table wines are the most common, and they're grouped by color--red, white, and blush, which is sometimes called rosé. A red wine should be served at room temperature, and it goes well with hearty, meat-based dishes like steak and spaghetti. White and blush wines should be served chilled, and they go best with lighter fare, like fish and chicken. Many wines, called varietals, are named after the variety of grape used to make them. Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, and Pinot Noir are popular red varietals, while Chardonnay, Chenin Blanc, and Johannisberg Riesling are popular white ones. In Europe, some wines, often blends of different varietals, are named after the place where the wine is produced, like Bordeaux, Burgundy, Chablis, Rhine, and Rhône. These European wines are often superb, but American wines that have borrowed these regional names, like California Chablis, are almost always mediocre. If you're buying a domestic wine, it's often better to go with a varietal, like a California Cabernet Sauvignon.

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equal parts grape juice and broth (in stews and sauces) OR wine essence OR coffee (in baked chocolate or nut dishes) OR fruit juice (in baked fruit dishes) OR vinegar (in marinades) OR broth OR verjus (in salad dressings) OR lemon juice (in salad dressings)
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