Wines best served chilled
Chill, Bro: Wines That Are Best Served Chilled
If you've ever drank a less-than-thrilling bottle of vino, its temperature could be the culprit. It's not just the vintage, vineyard where the wine was made, and type of glass that affects how a wine tastes. The temperature of a wine can greatly affect your drinking experience as well -- even the smell of wine changes depending on how hot or cold it is. For the best taste, texture, and aroma, learn which wines are best enjoyed after being chilled.
Cooling wine to the perfect temperature can be tricky, which is why many wine drinkers prefer using a specialized cooler. Other wine connoisseurs make use of a cellar or other storage area to keep wines closer to their optimal temperature.
Whether you have a high-tech wine chiller or you prefer to use your fridge to do the job, here are some of the several types of wine that are best enjoyed when cooled.
It's widely believed that red wines must be served at room temperature, but that's not always the case. With the exception of very fine and well-aged reds, this type of wine is usually best when cooled between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Along with chilling in this temperature range, decanting red wines helps develop its aroma and taste. To quickly chill reds, including Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Pinot Noir, and Zinfandel, place your bottle in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes.
Whites taste significantly better when they're served chilled down to at least 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Some white wines are even better when cooled below that, all the way to 50 degrees. Gewurztraminer, Chardonnay, Moscato, Pinot Gris, Riesling, and Sauvignon Blanc are examples of whites that are wonderful at this temperature. Pop your bottle in the fridge for two to three hours or place it in the freezer for 30 minutes.
Roses may have a coloration that's closer to red wine, but its chemical composition is more akin to whites. Like white wine, the ever-popular rose is best served between 50 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The sweeter the rose, the cooler a temperature the wine can take. Once your rose is open, let it sit on the table to let its character and scent develop -- the same can be done with white wine. You'll notice that it pleasantly changes slightly as it sits after being chilled.
Sparkling Wines and Champagne
Bubbly wines are ideal served quite cold, between 40 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit. This is why champagne is often served in an ice bucket -- putting your bottle on ice for half an hour will typically get it to the right temperature. If you have more time or no ice bucket, put sparkling wines and champagne in the freezer for 45 minutes to an hour.
These guidelines are simple to remember and will help even inexpensive wines taste better. Once you learn which wines are tastiest when chilled, you'll have no problem confidently picking out the perfect bottle to drink alone or with a meal.