Do you love grapes? These miniature fruits are not only tasty but also loaded with all types of vitamins and minerals that can help promote health and prevent disease.
Whether you’re looking to grow your own grapes or find the perfect grape for a snack or dessert, there are hundreds of varieties to consider. Keep reading to learn more about 13 popular types of grapes!
1. Concord Grapes
Concord grapes are synonymous with grape jelly. Equally sweet and tart, these purple grapes boast the balanced flavor people have come to love in their jellies, pies, and other desserts.
The Concord grape reaches peak sweetness once it is ready for harvest. Concord is also considered a slip-skin grape, as its peel is easily separated from its flesh — aiding the process of cooking and juicing.
Ephraim Wales Bull is credited with developing this variety in 1854, and the grape is named after the town in which it was discovered — Concord, Massachusetts. Despite the grape’s New England roots, Concord grapes are also grown throughout the southeast, midwest, and other regions of the United States today.
2. Cotton Candy Grapes
Combine the health benefits of a conventional grape with the sugary flavors of cotton candy and you’ve got the Cotton Candy grape — a sweeter and more elongated green grape than you might be used to seeing at your local supermarket.
David Cain of International Fruit Genetics is credited with developing this table grape in 2010. Although the grape is lab-generated, it’s not genetically modified. Rather, the Cotton Candy grape is a hybrid of two undisclosed varieties.
Despite its potent sweet flavor, the Cotton Candy grape is all-natural and boasts reasonable sugar levels. Today, California-based grower, Grapery, produces the majority of the Cotton Candy grapes that are sold in the United States.
3. Moon Grapes
Moon grapes, sometimes referred to as Moon Drop grapes or Sapphire grapes are thin, elongated grapes that resemble miniature eggplants. Despite their unconventional and almost otherworldly appearance, Moon grapes are one of the most popular table varieties on the market.
Developed by International Fruit Genetics’ botanist David Cain and the Grapery’s Jack Pandol in 2004, the Moon grape has a sweet flavor balanced with a hint of tartness. While it’s a fairly juicy grape, its crisp skin and firm flesh are such that you can break one cleanly in half.
The Moon grape’s exotic appearance and rich flavor make it the perfect addition to any charcuterie board. Make sure you take advantage of its availability between August and October!
4. Corinth (Champagne) Grapes
The Corinth grape, also known as a Champagne grape or Zante Currant, is a small, versatile grape that is used for snacks, desserts, and even decoration.
Unlike many of the recent varieties that we have today, Corinth grapes date back to before the fall of Rome and have been in steady production since the 1930s. Within this category of grapes, varieties are organized by color. The red, white, and black grape are among the most popular varieties.
Due to its miniature size, the Corinth grape is the ideal snacking grape, and its sweet-yet-balanced flavor makes it a great option for desserts and other treats. Because dried Zante currents boast higher concentrated levels of sweetness and a hint of spice, they are also very popular raisins!
5. Lemberger Grapes
The Lemberger grape, which goes by various names throughout the world, is a popular red wine grape that is known for its bold flavor and strong fragrance.
First recognized in 1862 and imported to Germany in 1877, the Lemberger grape was initially considered a clone of the Gamay grape. DNA tests have since dispelled that myth. Lemberger possesses a peppery spiciness, acidity, and boldness that makes it ideal for blending with other wine grapes.
Because Lemberger grapes are susceptible to mildew, disease, and vine hazards, they require a watchful eye from winter until harvest. With that said, Lemberger thrives in cold climates — including the New York Finger Lakes region and Canada.
6. Kyoho Grapes
The Kyoho grape is a round table grape that is known for its sour skin, sweet flesh, and cultural significance to the country of Japan.
Japanese breeder Yasushi Oinoue is credited with developing this grape in 1937 and naming it Kyoho — which translates to “great mountain peak” — after a visit to Mount Fuji. In 1957, Kyoho grapes were released for commercial production and rose to fame throughout Japan, China, and all of Asia shortly thereafter.
Today, Kyoho grapes are grown and sold all over the globe, albeit at a premium in certain countries — costing up to $60 for a single bunch! Kyoho grapes are beloved for their delicious sweet flesh, though some customers prefer to peel the grape’s sour skin.
7. Gum Drop Grapes
Few fruits capture the sugary goodness of a piece of candy quite like the Gum Drop grape. As its name suggests, Gum Drop is much sweeter than your average grape, yet its slightly tart skin prevents it from being sickly sweet.
This relatively new variety was developed at the Grapery in California and started popping up in supermarkets in 2016. Today, the Grapery remains the sole distributor of Gum Drop grapes in the United States, as they hold the patent for the grape.
This seedless grape starts out green and slowly turns a dark shade of purple as it matures. It’s typically round, although larger grapes can be slightly elongated. The Gum Drop grape is an ideal candidate for snacking, whether you enjoy your grapes straight from the vine or from the freezer on a hot summer day.
8. Witch Finger Grapes
Witch Finger grapes — which, have been understandably rebranded as Tear Drops in recent years — are long, finger-like fruits that come in a variety of colors. The most common Tear Drops are green and purple, and both varieties start to appear in supermarkets during late summer.
In 2002, California-based grape breeder the Grapery partnered with International Fruit Genetics (IGF) to bring this peculiar-looking fruit to life. Originally, the grape was dubbed Chili Pepper before undergoing two name changes in 2011 and 2016, respectively.
The grape’s skin is relatively thin, while its seedless flesh possesses the crunch of a ripe plum. Once you get past the fruit’s odd appearance, this sweet treat is the perfect two-bite snacking grape!
9. Fox Grapes
The Fox grape is a blue-back, seedless table grape from which Concord, Alexander, Onaka, and other popular varieties are derived.
The Fox grape is native to North America, and some experts believe it to be the fruit that Leif Ericsson spotted along the coast of Vinland during the 11th century. Carl Linnaeus is credited with officially cataloging the vine species in the mid-18th century.
What distinguishes Fox grapes from European varieties is their slip-skin, meaning its flesh is only loosely attached to its skin. This makes the Fox grape easy to peel, and in fact, you can remove its skin by gently squeezing one end. Much like Concord grapes, Fox grapes are often used in jellies, jams, and grape juice!
10. Ruby Roman Grapes
Ruby Roman was the lone variety to survive a rigorous 1995 Japanese farming effort with over 400 experimental vines. During the 14 years that followed, breeders carefully perfected the variety’s taste, color, and size.
Even today, every Ruby Roman grape must meet certain shape, weight, and sugar content requirements to be sold on the Japanese market. Purists will tell you that there’s only one way to consume a Ruby Roman grape — straight from the vine!
11. Candy Snaps Grapes
The Candy Snaps grape is a seedless red grape variety that was developed as part of International Fruit Genetics’ (IGF) novelty grape line — an initiative designed to replace artificial sweets with more natural alternatives.
One unique feature of the Candy Snaps grape is its ability to hold its red-purple color long after it has ripened. Similarly, these grapes also boast a longer shelf life than the average red grape.
This table grape’s thin skin and firm flesh provide an addictive crisp and crunch. While Candy Snaps is mostly sweet with very little acidity, many people note a fruity aftertaste unlike that of any other grape.
12. Candy Hearts Grapes
The Candy Hearts grape is a very recent red grape variety that was only developed in 2014 and released for commercial production in 2017.
Another International Fruit Genetics creation, Candy Hearts balances its signature sweetness with a hint of acidity. When taste-testing Candy Hearts, you may even notice a hint of vanilla, strawberry, or raspberry.
This round, seedless grape is mostly dark red; though powdery white bloom tends to appear towards the stem. Much like the Concord grape, Candy Hearts is used in all kinds of jellies and jams!
13. Carnival Grapes
Carnival grapes are nearly unmistakable due to their signature golden-green color and extreme levels of sweetness.
Sunview Vineyards, a third-generation family farm in California, is credited with developing this grape. Today, the company holds a proprietary patent and is the exclusive producer of Carnival grapes.
This seedless grape’s burst of flavor is reminiscent of cotton candy, candy apples, and other sugary carnival treats — without any of the artificial flavors and sugars, of course.
Wrapping Up These 13 Types of Grapes
Whether you plan to purchase them or grow them yourself, are you ready to try out some of these delicious grapes? Of course, these 13 types of grapes are just a few of the many different tasty varieties on the market.
Excited for more grape content? Next, check out my grape vine page for more growing tips, care guides, recipes, and more!
- About the Author
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Ben Morgan is a husband, father, and writer for Apple Pie Media. He grew up in Tasmania, Australia, a largely rural territory that has earned the nickname, “The Apple Isle,” for its many apple orchards. Some of Ben’s fondest memories include family trips to one of many local orchards, where he would enjoy plucking and eating fresh fruits with his younger siblings.
Today, Ben, his wife, and daughter love to visit their local South Carolina farmers market on the weekends. After discovering a new variety of fruit or veggie, he looks forward to sitting down at his computer to share his knowledge and experiences with other aspiring green thumbs.