Under-the-Radar Wine Regions: Sipping Beyond Bordeaux and Napa


Wine enthusiasts have long hailed Bordeaux and Napa as the pinnacle of viticulture. Their renowned reputation precedes them, making their names synonymous with quality wine. Yet, while these regions deserve their accolades, there are numerous wine regions across the globe that are often overlooked. In this guide, we’ll take you on a journey to some of the world’s under-the-radar wine regions, where you can sip exquisite wines without the crowds.

  1. Txakoli from Basque Country, Spain While Spain’s Rioja and Ribera del Duero often steal the spotlight, the Basque Country’s Txakoli is a hidden gem. This slightly fizzy, light white wine is perfect for sipping alongside seafood.
  2. Wines of the Azores, Portugal Located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, the Azores are not just a haven for nature lovers but also for wine aficionados. The volcanic soils here yield unique, mineral-rich wines that have to be tasted to be believed.
  3. Slovenian Orange Wines Slovenia, a small European nation, is making a big name in the world of natural wines. Their orange wines, which are white wines made with prolonged grape skin contact, are both intriguing and delightful.
  4. Frappato from Sicily, Italy Sicily might be known for its Marsala, but Frappato is a light red wine that showcases the island’s diverse viticultural offerings. Fruity and easy-drinking, it’s a must-try.
  5. Swartland Revolution, South Africa Beyond the famous Stellenbosch region lies Swartland, a dynamic wine region known for its Rhône-style blends. With a new generation of winemakers pushing boundaries, it’s an area to watch.


  • Q: Are these lesser-known regions more affordable than Bordeaux and Napa?
    • A: Generally, these regions offer high-quality wines at a fraction of the price of more renowned areas, making them great for discovering new favorites on a budget.
  • Q: How can I best explore these regions?
    • A: Consider joining a wine tour or hiring a local guide. Not only will you get insider knowledge, but you’ll also ensure you’re tasting the best each region has to offer.
  • Q: Is the wine quality comparable to Bordeaux and Napa?
    • A: Absolutely! While every wine region has its unique characteristics, the ones listed here offer exceptional quality wines that can rival those from more famous regions.


The world of wine is vast and diverse, and while Bordeaux and Napa will always have their rightful place in the spotlight, venturing off the beaten path can be equally rewarding. From the volcanic terrains of the Azores to the rolling hills of Swartland, there’s a world of wine waiting to be discovered. So, the next time you’re in the mood to explore, consider raising a glass from one of these lesser-known but equally impressive wine regions.