Serving Wine at the Right Temperature
How to Get Your Wine to the Correct Temperature
What happens when you suddenly have unexpected guests or are just in the mood for a glass of your favorite wine and it’s not at the right temperature? Here are a few tips to get your whites to chill fast and to get your reds to the perfect temperature. Remember that the aroma and the flavor of what you have in that bottle will depend on the temperature you serve it at so it is worth getting it right.
TO COOL A WHITE WINE:
To bring white wine to the ideal temperature the trick is ice, water, and salt. Apparently salt accelerates the cooling procedure. If you happen to run into this situation often, make ice cubes directly with salt. This is the fastest way. Or alternatively, dissolve some salt in cold water, dip a couple of paper towels into the water, wrap them around the bottle and stick it in the freezer… we promise it works!
TO WARM A RED WINE:
If you placed a red in the fridge by mistake (a dreadful mistake…but just for the purpose of the blog let’s say you did), or left it somewhere chilly and its too cold to drink, take a napkin (cloth is better), dip it in hot water and then wrap it around the bottle to warm it up.
Remember that serving wine at the right temperature makes all the difference in the world to the flavor and aromas of the bottle:
Bubbles need to be “Ice Cold”, so serve them between 5-10° C
White wine should be served “Fridge Cold”, between 7-13°C
Light Reds/Rosè should be served “Cool”, between 12-16°C
Sweet ‘passito’ wines give their best between 12-18° C
Reds range between 14-22°C depending on which red you have in the bottle:
– Young and with low tannins: 15-17°C
– Structured reds with a body: 18-20°C
– Reds with tannins that have aged in oak: 18-22°C
You might laugh at the thought of all these different temperatures for wine. But it all makes perfect sense.
If a white wine is served too cold, the aromas and flavors of that wine are disguised, making the wine seem simple. If, on the other hand, the white wine is served too warm, it will lose its structure.
The same goes for red. If too cold the aromas will be masked making the wine seem tannic, acidic and bitter. If served too warm you palate will perceive it as flat, over-alcoholic and not pleasant.
Get more tips on drinking and serving Italian wine by taking a Local Aromas wine tour or tasting led by a qualified sommelier.