THE BEST WAY TO SERVE AND ENJOY YOUR WINE
Ever wondered if there is a formula to serving your favourite wine the best way? Ever wondered if there was any real worth in allowing your red to ‘breathe’? Ever wondered if there is a correct temperature to serve your wine? The answer, quite simply is YES. That’s because the way you serve your favourite tipple directly impacts the way it smells and tastes. The goal of having the right wine-serving temperature is to release the best possible aromatics in the glass without compromising the taste. So, in order to have the best experience enjoying your wine, stick to these guidelines and you can’t go wrong. Remember ICE, COLD, COOL and BREATHE!.
All things bubbly – ICE, ICE, ICE BABY
Bubbles should be served cold as ICE. Champagne, Proseccos and Sparkling Wines should generally be served (slightly above freezing) at 5 to 10 degrees. A good rule of thumb is to take your favourite bottle of bubbles from the fridge and pop it in the freezer 20 minutes before serving (and for the love of all things sparkling don’t forget to take it out – else your neighbours think it’s firecracker night), if you want to chill your bubby the traditional method (or if your tight on freezer space) you can place the bottle into a bucket of ice for 30 minutes for the same effect. Keeping your sparkling wine ice cold will ensure the bubbles are served fine in the glass and not foamy. Anything remaining in the bottle after first serves should be placed back on ice until finished.
Rosé and White Wines – WHITE COLD
The best way to serve your favourite White Wines and Rosés are…well (you guessed it)….cold. And although white wine is delicious when it is chilled, it shouldn’t be consumed too cold. Somewhere within the vicinity of 10 to 15 degrees should be fine. Ideally it is best to place in the fridge a day or two before serving. No need to place on ice or rush the bottle back to the fridge after first serves, and given you are not sitting in the middle of the Sahara it’s perfectly fine allow your white wine to sweat it out a little on the table – in fact the change in temperature will offer subtle enhancements to the characters and aromas of the wine.
Red Wines – LET’S COOL THINGS DOWN A LITTLE
There really isn’t too much truth to the idea of serving red wine at room temperature, if a red wine is too warm the alcohol completely highjacks the subtle flavours of the drop. Ideally a little cooler at 15 to 20 degrees is generally the optimum temperature for serving red wines. Of course different varietals lend themselves to different serving temperatures; full-bodied wines (Cabernet Sauvignon or Shiraz) are perfectly served at temperatures of 16 to 18 degrees. Lighter drops such as Pinots are best served at a slightly cooler temperature, anywhere from 12 to 15 is fine. To cool a wine down you can always place it in the fridge for 20 minutes before serving it. After opening and either decanting or serving, it’s perfectly fine to leave the wine bottle open on the table.
Red – BREATHE BABY, JUST BREATHE
The notion of allowing a red to ‘breathe’ means simply allowing the wine to mingle with the air around it. By doing this the wine aromas will warm and open up, and all the flavours and character of the wine come out to play. Simply opening a bottle and leaving it does not allow all the wine to greet the air thoroughly through the narrow neck opening. The only real way of allowing a red to adequately breathe is to either decant it or pour it into the wine glass and let it aerate in situ.