The weather will be warmer before you know it and you’ll need a new summer drink to enjoy with your friends. Many turn to rose or chilled white wine, but there’s only so much of that you can take over one season.
Wine enthusiasts have recently been discovering the joys of chilled red wines. Yes, really. That doesn’t mean you can throw just any bottle of red in the refrigerator. That will just ruin it, and it can ruin white wines too, if you’re not careful. Instead, if you pick the right wine you can enjoy a red wine even in the warmest months.
Why Temperature Is Important
Many wine experts are working from a rule book that’s hundreds of years old. The biggest reason why our temperatures are wrong, some say, is because we now live in a world where homes can be heated as standard. When people lived without such luxuries, room temperature was lower and so red wines were served colder.
Wines are developed to be served at a certain temperature. The fruit, perfume and flavors will be different depending on how cold or warm the wine is. If you look on any wine label, there will be recommendations on what temperature it should be served at. Some would actually surprise you with how cold or warm they should actually be.
Which Reds Can Be Served Chilled?
Not every red wine can be served chilled, so be careful which ones you put in the ice bucket.
Lighter red grapes such as Pinot Noir, Gamay, Corvina, Tempranillo and Cabernet Franc can all be served as low as 57F°. This is especially true if the wine you have is unoaked.
If you have a sturdier red wine, such as a Bordeaux, then it’s best not to go any lower than 46F°. This is because if these are served too cold, you’ll lose all of the distinctive flavor of the wine.
The best rule of thumb is the lighter and fruitier the red wine, the better it will do if it is chilled. Give them a try for yourself, you’ll be amazed at how much more you can taste in just one sip.
Be Careful of Tannins
Tannins in your wine will either comes from the grapes themselves, or from the oak barrels they were made in. If the barrels are new or nearly new oak, there will be more tannins present. The more astringent your wine, the warmer you should serve it.
When to Try A Chilled Red Wine
The best time to try a chilled red wine is in the summer, while you’re having a barbecue. They pair very well with meats and charred seafood dishes. If you don’t want to pair it with anything though, you don’t need to. They go just as well with friends on a sunny afternoon.
So, have you been convinced? Wine experts say you don’t need to drink that red wine as warm as you’d think. Give it a try!
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