<img height="1" width="1" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=1209548899413190&amp;ev=PageView &amp;noscript=1">
4 min read

An Intro to Muscat Wine: Characteristics, Pairings and Suggestions

Featured Image

Cabernet Blanc, Syrah, Pinot Grigio, Tempranillo, Malbec, Muscat—wait, what’s a muskrat doing in a lineup of wines?

All kidding aside, Muscat wine may not be the most recognized varietal in your neighborhood, but that doesn't mean it's not worth a spot in your rotation. You’ve probably heard of Moscato or Moscatel—yes, the same grape—but withhold your judgment just long enough to learn what there is to appreciate about Muscat wine.

A Brief Overview of Muscat Wine’s History

Like many a grape varieties, Muscat wine’s humble story begins in France—the Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains grape family, to be precise. These small grapes have grown in the Southern Rhone Valley of France and gained popularity among wine drinkers in the 1990s. Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains grapes are related to those used to produce wines including Moscato d’Asti in Italy, Grüner Veltliner in Austria, Rutherglen Moscato in Australia, and Vin de Constance from South Africa.

Some believe Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains grape vines were brought by the Romans from Italy to France 2,000 years ago, or possibly by the Greeks from their vineyards near the Mediterranean Sea. The small grapes are light brown, pink, or red, and are sometimes used to make raisins. Unlike many other sweet wine grapes that are picked late in the harvest, Muscat grapes are often picked first in the season. “Muscat wine is the one that sincerely tastes like the grape,” you might overhear some people say at wine tastings or dinner parties.

What Does Muscat Wine Taste Like?

Muscat wines are generally on the low side in acidity, tannins, and alcohol. Clean to syrupy, golden sweetness is the name of the Muscat game. Sometimes, they’re a bit dry, but there’s no need to be ashamed if you like it really sweet. Muscat wine is here to be your dessert accomplice.

A few options for you:

Pro tip: Don’t confuse Muscat and Moscato for the dry, savory white wine Muscadet. They are totally different. But you might want to try (and even buy) both. Check out our video on how to taste wine like an expert! 

Foods to Pair With Muscat Wine

With so much fresh, light sweetness in the Muscat wine family, think of pairing a glass with rich foods and desserts. Consider a variety of foods that match or complement the textures of whatever specific Muscat wine you’ve picked out.

Pairing suggestions with Muscat wine:

  • Feeling fancy and French? Serve pâté and a funky bleu cheese for snacks with Muscat wine as an aperitif.
  • Eating spicy Thai or Indian food? You may be surprised at how soothing the sweetness of Muscat can be next to intense spice and flavors.
  • Serve a rich berry-topped cheesecake and wash it down with a glass of Muscat.
  • Some Muscats are more viscous, meaning their body may drink like it’s almost thick and creamy or raisiny--these would be good with vanilla and caramel ice cream topped with baked apples.
With Muscat wine, you’re in for a world of dessert bliss. Definitely serve it all chilled. Enjoy!

New call-to-action


gift cards
6 min read

Red, White, & Booze: Cocktails with Patriotic Flair

Whether you are spending the Fourth of July up north or enjoying the fireworks closer to home, Haskell’s once again has...

5 min read

Five O'Clock Somewhere: 3 Must-Try Extra Anejo Cocktails

Whoever decided happy hour could only start after 5 o’clock was foolish. We like to think that happy hour begins...

5 min read

Cheers to the Barbecue Boss! Dad-approved Beertails and Marinades

It’s time to fire up the grills, ice down the beers, and celebrate Dad!

Just like Dad, these beertails are no fuss, so...