Pronunciation: [guh-VURTS-trah-mee-ner]

The German word Gewürz means "spicy," and this white wine is known for its crisp, spicy characteristics. It's a specialty of the French region Alsace—the area that buffers Germany and France—and is also produced in Germany and California. Gewürztraminer has a distinctively pungent, perfumy, yet clean flavor. It's available in varying degrees of sweetness; the drier versions complement fish and poultry, the slightly sweeter styles are perfect for summer spritzers, and the sweet late-harvest versions make excellent dessert wines. Gewürztraminer is best when drunk fairly young because even the vintage versions won't usually age well over 5 years.

From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.

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