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[vuh-rahy-i-tl] /vəˈraɪ ɪ tl/
of, pertaining to, designating, or characteristic of a variety.
constituting a variety.
(in U.S. winemaking) designating a wine made entirely or chiefly from one variety of grape.
a varietal wine named for such a grape (distinguished from generic).
Origin of varietal
First recorded in 1865-70; variet(y) + -al1
Related forms
varietally, adverb
intervarietal, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for varietal
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • These are only some of the varietal differences of the tomato.

  • The Floridian form has received the varietal name of mortoni.

    The Sea-beach at Ebb-tide Augusta Foote Arnold
  • This is probably only a varietal form of the preceding species.

    The Butterfly Book William Jacob Holland
  • Specimens connecting the typical with the varietal form are in my possession.

    The Butterfly Book William Jacob Holland
  • The writer prefers not to apply the varietal name to the forms of our area.

    Trees of Indiana

    Charles Clemon Deam
  • It is very rare in varietal vineyards and hardly known to nurserymen.

    The Grapes of New York U. P. Hedrick
  • It is very rare in varietal vineyards and not known to nurserymen.

    The Grapes of New York U. P. Hedrick
  • The scrub pine is the humble parent of one of the splendid Western lumber pines, whose description comes under its varietal name.

    Trees Worth Knowing Julia Ellen Rogers
British Dictionary definitions for varietal


of, relating to, characteristic of, designating, or forming a variety, esp a biological variety
a wine labelled with the name of the grape from which it is pressed
Derived Forms
varietally, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for varietal

1866, a biologists' word (first attested in Darwin), from variety. In reference to wines, meaning "made from a single variety of grape" is first attested 1941, American English. As a noun, in this sense, attested from 1955.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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