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My love for wine is rapidly growing and not because I like the taste of wine but I am getting to know the art of wine making. Now we all know a glass of wine at the end of the day could be one of the best things ever but are you getting the maximum experience out of your wine? Today I will be discussing different kinds of wine, how to pour, at what temperature and what to eat with a certain type of wine.
Light, Dry White Wines-
Yes, there are “wet” wines out there. These white wines would be considered Pinto Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc)
You want this wine to be on the cooler side. This should be served around 45-49 degrees. Here’s a tip, the lighter (in color) the wine, the cooler it should be served. Now we are all adults here, drinking wine out of a solo cup is no longer in the equation. To experience the acidity and freshness of a dry white wine you would want to pour it in a stemmed glass with a U-shaped bowl to capture the wine’s floral and fruity aroma. The reason we want a steam on the glass is so you hold it by the steam and never by the glass itself. The warmth from your hands will warm the wine losing its maximum flavor.
Food Pairings- Pair these wines with light dish fishes, tomato and mozzarella salad, basic pasta and chicken dishes.
These are best slightly warmer than light whites, between 48-53°F, because of their complex fruit flavors and mild tannins. Since rosés can be produced from a number of varieties with different characteristics, the same rule as light, dry whites applies: the lighter in color and style it is, the more chilled it should be. A stemmed glass with a bowl that’s slightly tapered at the top works best for mature, full-bodied rosés. A slightly flared lip benefits younger, crisper and sweeter rosés. The lip directs sweetness to the tip of the tongue, where taste buds are most sensitive.
Food Pairings- light salads, light pasta and rice dishes, raw fish, and goat cheese. Perfect wine for a hot summer day.
Full Bodied Wines (Chardonnay, Albarino, Trebbiano)-
Serving these complex whites at 50-55°F enhances their layered aromatic characteristics and rich flavors. Tip: The less oaky the wine, the closer to 50°F it should be served. White Burgundy and well-oaked Viogner should be served closer to 55°F.
The classic Chardonnay glass-stemmed, with a rounded bowl and wide rim-dispenses the acidity and bold flavors evenly to the back and sides of the tongue. This wider-bowled glass, similar to a red-wine glass, can also be used for older vintage or well-oaked whites.
Food Pairings- Lobster, shrimp, scallops, beans/risotto, grilled or smoked vegetables
Light to Medium Bodied Reds (Pinot Noir, Chianti)-
The vibrant aromas and flavors of these reds are best highlighted at 54-60°F. If poured too warm, their luscious fruit flavors will taste tart and acidic, ultimately overpowering. A Chianti-style glass, stemmed with a slightly tapered rim, best accentuates light-bodied wines that are fruit and mineral forward with buoyant acidity. A wider-bowled Pinot Noir glass is perfect for more complex, medium-bodied wines with delicate qualities. For reds I like to use stemless glassware since this wine should be served a little warmer.
Food Pairings- fatter fish like salmon, roasted chicken, heavier pasta dishes, duck or other birds, casseroles
Full Bodied Reds (Cabs, Syrah/Shiraz, Merlot, Malbec)-
There’s a misconception that big reds should be served at around 70°F, a temperature that allows the alcohol to dominate flavor. When served at the proper temperature, 60-65°F, and full-bodied wines reflect a lush mouthfeel, rounded tannins and well-balanced acidity. Big, bold wines need wide-bowled glasses with greater surface area. It allows the wines’ high acidity, rich fruit and oak characteristics, and alcohol to breathe and sit in proper balanced.
Before guests arrive, I like to pour a bottle of a full bodied red into my decanter to allow oxygen into the wine. When you decant a bottle of wine, two things happen. First, slow and careful decanting allows wine (particularly older wine) to separate from its sediment, which, if left mixed in with the wine, will impart a very noticeable bitter, astringent flavor. Second, when you pour wine into a decanter, the resulting agitation causes the wine to mix with oxygen, enabling it to develop and come to life at an accelerated pace (this is particularly important for younger wine).
Food Pairings- steak, roasted vegetables, chocolate, spicy (rice) dishes.