In this edition of Millesima Tips we will be discussing the correct serving temperature for all of your wines. We know that the temperature and humidity is important when storing wine is important. Now we will elaborate on how to bring your wines to the correct serving temperature.
What does temperature do to wine?
In the same way that the weather affects the vine cycle, it can also affect wine right before you serve it. To coax the pure and unblemished aromas of flavors of a wine, the temperature is crucial. If a white wine is enjoyed (or simply tasted) at a very cold temperature, its body and complex aromas will go unappreciated. Red wines are usually served too warm, actuating its tannic structure and alcohol. Serving a wine too warm or too cold can have severe effects on your tasting experience, it has to be just right!
Best Served Chilled
Sparkling wines, rose wine and dry white wines are best served very cold, anywhere from 43°-50° F. The cooler temperatures allow them to protect their crisp and fruity aromas. Sparkling wines present refined bubbles at cool temperatures, as opposed to having a frothy mousse when served at a warmer temperature.
Light-bodied reds and Full-bodied whites
Light bodied red wines (Pinot Noir or Beaujolais) are quite delicate. As are full-bodied white wines (Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc). The qualities of these wines are quite focused on their aromatic qualities, and tend to have light structures. Light-bodied wines should be served at 50°-60° F. Wines served at this temperature express their aromatic complexity with ease.
Full bodied red wines
Full body red wines (Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah) are known for their strong tannic structure and therefore can benefit from a slight chill. Reds wines show best at 60°-64° F their acidity and bitter characteristics began to soften and their structure mellows. Ideally, this temperature is not far from room temperature.
Sometimes there is not enough time to perfectly chill (or warm) your wine to the ideal serving temperature before your guests arrive. There are a few ways to gain lost time and a few tips that are important to know. If you have the time before an event, it is best to keep your bottle in a refrigerator for up to 4 hours (depending on your choice of refrigerator). Using an ice bucket filled with water and ice (in order to maximize the contact with the bottle) for 30 minutes can chill a bottle of Champagne. When cooling wines in a refrigerator (or freezer), it’s always best to store bottles on their side. Champagne should never be stored in the freezer or served in pre-chilled glasses. When stored in a freezer, if left for too long the bottle can explode. When Champagne is served too cold, its uniqueness qualities are muted.