If you love drinking red wine you may be surprised to discover the big piece of advice that can affect its flavours and aromas, plus some quick hacks to correct it
Chances are that if you’re a red wine drinker you’re a big fan of the deep spectrum of flavours and aromas these wine varietals offer, but most red wine drinkers don’t realise there’s a common serving misconception that could affect this. If we asked you the best temperature to serve red wine, it’s likely that you, like 82% of Australians surveyed recently, will say at or above room temperature.
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However in a study, conducted at the Sydney Wine Academy by Taylors Wines, 100% of drinkers couldn’t tell they were drinking the exact same wine when served two glasses of the same Taylors Estate Shiraz, but at different temperatures. In fact, 71% said they would actually pay more for the red served at a slightly chilled temperature.
Because in countries with warmer climates, higher temperatures – particularly in summer – have a negative impact on how a red wine tastes. The warmer a red wine is, the more pronounced and dominant its alcohol and tannins are, masking the beautiful fruit and oak characters that typically shine in the glass. The study shows that red wines served slightly chilled are far more enjoyable than reds at the modern ‘room temperature’.
The ideal temperature
The origin of the ‘room temperature’ wine myth actually comes from the chateaus of medeivel France, where their cellars maintained a balmy temperature of 14°C. Today’s modern ‘room temperature’ is at around 23°C, even warmer in summer – slightly different than our friends in the Northern Hemisphere!
According to Taylors, most red wines are best enjoyed between 12°C-18°C depending on the variety, meaning it’s ideal to place them in the fridge before serving. Yep, that’s right, if you want to enjoy red wine at its best in summer, bung it in the fridge – which also makes it one of the summer season’s greatest refreshments too.
Quick Temperature Hacks
We’ve all been there, you’re ready to drink a bottle of wine, only to discover it’s too warm. Here are some great hacks for chilling your wine to the optimum temperature…
- Place a plastic bag inside a wine glass and fill the bag halfway with ice. Twist the top of the bag to close it and pour red wine into the glass. Remove the bag after a minute or two and enjoy.
- Put a handful of grapes in a bowl and freeze. Place the frozen grapes in a wine glass and pour red wine into the glass. Using grapes instead of ice cubes directly in the glass is far better as it won’t dilute your precious red. Plus, you’ll have a tasty grape snack after you’ve finished your wine.
- Alternatively (and for a lot less messing around) Taylors Wines Optimum Drinking Temperature sensor is a handy gauge that's on the label of a number of their wines, which changes colour to show when the wine is at the ideal temperature to drink (pictured below). Simply place the bottle in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes, take the bottle out, swipe the sensor and check the temperature range, pour and enjoy. Too easy.