A berry that grows in bunches on a vine. There are green, light purple, and purplish-black varieties. Depending on the variety, most grapes are sweet with a slight tartness.
Grapes can be found in most temperate climates in the Northern Hemisphere. Humans began cultivating grapes as early as 6500 BCE.
The common grape vine (Vitis vinifera) is one of the most popular grapes, as it is used to make wine. Europeans introduced it to North America during colonization, though it didn’t take well to the climate until bred with North American grapes.
Grapes can be categorized into three groups:
1) table or dessert grapes (low acidity and firm)
2) wine grapes (high acidity and soft)
3) dried grapes (mid-low acidity, firm, and high in sugar).
New Oxford Book of Food Plants by John Vaughan et al. (2009)
The Oxford Companion to Food. 3rd ed., by Alan Davidson and edited by Tom Jaine (2014)
“A (Very Condensed) History of Grapes” from Pretty Lady Vineyards http://www.dulcich.com/a-very-condensed-history-of-grapes
“Vitis” from Kew Science Plants of the World Online http://www.plantsonheworldonline.org/taxonurn:lsid:ipni.org:names:325876-2