- wines of any grape variety
Serving wine at the correct temperature is about as important for the drinking pleasure as the storage and correct handling. Wine served too cold cannot develop the full bouquet, but will also “cover up” some minor imperfections, but wine served too warm allows the alcohol taste to over power the flavor and bouquet of the wine.
While drinking wine at a certain temperature is foremost up to the individuals preference, there are a few general guidelines that need to be adhered to in order to ensure the wine can be enjoyed at it’s best. Keep in mind that the phrase “wine is served at room temperature”, refers to the “cellar temperature” rather than our regular living room temperature. It is also safer to serve wine just a little cooler, as the wine will warm very quickly in the glass after pouring.
Cooling or bringing wine to temperature gently is important. Generally wine placed in a refrigerator will cool a bottle approximately 2 degrees Celsius (4F) every 10 minutes. Rapid chilling in an ice bucket might “shock” the wine and if left too long will cool the wine to close to 0C (30F). Bringing red wines to temperature basically works the same, leaving them at room temperature will work best. “Warming” red wine in the sun or next to a heater will have a negative effect to its flavor. It is best to have a wine thermometer handy that will allow you to determine the correct temperature very easily. Mostly they also come with a chart for easy reference. Below is a guide to the correct temperatures for different kinds of wine:6-8C (43-46F)Sparkling wine and Champagne. Most varieties of sweet dessert wines including Sauterne, Ice wine and “Spaetlese” wines.7-10C (45-54F)White wines of various grape varieties such as Chenin Blancs, light Chardonnays, Rieslings, white Zinfandel, Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blancs.10C -12C (50-54F)Rose wine, white Burgundy wines, light red wines such as Beaujolais and light European red wines from Germany, Switzerland and Austria. Light Sherry.14-16C (57-61F)Matured red wines of various grape varieties such as Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Zinfandel. Bordeaux, red Burgundy, Rhone valley and most Italian and Spanish wines. Fortified wines such as Port, dark Sherry, Marsala, Vermouth, Madeira and Muscat16-18C (61-65F)Very matured Grand Crus wines.