Maybe you drink white wine only with fish. Or only with lunch. Or only at midsummer baby showers when the keg runs out. Well, get ready for white Burgundies big enough to decant (that’s right—decant) all winter, the best champagne for fried chicken, and Chardonnay that’s not just for aging socialites. You’ll never skip the “whites” section again
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“The only thing red wine does better than white is stain your clothes.” —ALAN RICHMAN

“Yes, white wines can have a huge, brawny structure. I even like to eat them—I mean drink them—with steak. California Chardonnays are great for this. Look for one that has some oak but also fruit and acid. Kistler is a widely available producer whose wines totally strike that balance.”


Here, three additional things white wine goes better with.

PORK “When I was part of the crew at Momofuku Ssäm, we paired white wine with almost everything on the menu—brussels sprouts, pork belly, even the over-the-top pork shoulder bo ssäm. It seems counter-intuitive, but really crisp whites from the Loire or oily, high-acid Alsatian and German Rieslings cut right through the fatty, richness of pork–and still taste sexy.” —LESLIE PARISEAU

TONGUE-SEARING SPICE fiery dishes are best served with white for a couple reasons. Heat brings out the booze and bitterness typical of a lot of reds. Instead, pour a low-alcohol, semi-fruity, zingy white–like Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, or Verdicchio—that won’t be drowned out by a little fire. —ANDREW RICHDALE

SEX “Ok, sort of. Scientists still go back and forth about whether the melatonin in red actually knocks you out. It may, it may not. You know what though? Half of foreplay is keeping me on my toes and just about nothing is more predictable than pouring me a glass of Bordeaux. Surprise me! Something super-chilled, something spicy, something hard to pronounce like Gewürztraminer. Anything but red and I’ll be impressed.”—ANONYMOUS FEMALE GQ STAFFER WHO APPRECIATES THE ELEMENT OF SURPRISE

The best white wines in the world—I’m not backing down from this—come from an area in northeastern Italy bordered by Slovenia and Austria known as Friuli. Tourists haven’t yet savaged this region, so it’s with some reluctance that I urge a trip there, ninety miles due east of Venice, for a full immersion into a viticultural bizarro world of grape varietals (Malvasia Istriana, Ribolla Gialla, Pignolo, Schioppettino, Refosco) and producers (Venica, Keber, Toros, Princic, Picéch, Moschioni) you’re unlikely to encounter back home.

In this rippling and (at times) high-altitude territory abutting the Alps to the north and the Adriatic to the south, you can happily drink fine red wines all day, but you’d be an idiot for doing so. The microclimates are instead hot-wired for whites that tremble and whirl in your mouth like a meth-crazed ballerina.

And my God, the aromas. The Sauvignons hit you with a Sambuca waft, while the Tocais give off the nose of bitter almonds and the Malvasias (my favorite) a hypnotic whiff of sea salt and peaches. These wines bring out the best in prosciutto, pastas, and seafood of all types. They’re clean, bracing, electric. They’re practically all I drink. Hell, they’re practically all I think about. —ROBERT DRAPER