You are outside grilling up a juicy cheeseburger and enjoying our beautiful Southern spring weather – What’s in your glass?
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Sure, there’s lots of yummy rosé and delicious white wine for warm weather enjoyment. But if you don’t want to give up red – here are two reds that can handle a chill and still taste awesome.
Three things to look for when choosing a red to chill:
Low Tannins: That’s what makes your front teeth feel like they need to be brushed – tannins create a fuzzy feeling on your slick teeth. They come from skins, seeds, stems or can even come from long ageing in wood barrels. One way to tell a lower tannin wine is to look at it. If you can read through it, it’s likely to have lower tannins. Thinner grape skins = lighter wine with less tannin.
Medium to High Acid: Crisp acidity is actually a good thing in a wine. It helps balance the wine, hold fruit flavors over time, and makes the wine pair well with food. Think of the simple rustic reds served up in tumblers in the Mediterranean when you think of a food friendly wine that’s cooler than most.
Bright Fruit Flavors: If the wine makes you think of cherries, berries or other seasonal fruit, chances are that a chill will make it taste even more yummy. Slightly chilled red is fresher and a bit easier to drink.
Chilled Reds like the ones we are enjoying today should be served between 50F – 55F. Pop the bottle in your fridge about for about 45 minutes to an hour before you want to serve it.
TWO Chillable Reds
Valpolicella Classico Riserva
You may think that this is always a big red wine to only to be served up aside roast beef – but Valpolicella or Valpolicella Classico is the youngest, freshest and fruitiest of all the Valpolicellas. Its actually a red blend, made with 3 grapes that are typical of the region: Corvina, Rondinella and Corvinone.
Made with the Gamay grape, the area that is from the very bottom of the Burgundy region, right above Lyon, the foodie capital of France. This grape has a thin skin and lower alcohol making it a delicious and light red wine to chill.
This is NOT Beaujolais Nouveau, the new wine released right after harvest, instead this is wine that undergoes a full fermentation and ageing process. There are three things you can look for on the label when you buy Beaujolais. The simple name, Beaujolais, Beaujolais-Villages or Beaujolais Cru – one of ten locations that can be placed on the label because they are the highest quality. You can find simple Beaujolais or Beaujolais-Villages for under $15, and even the Rockstar Beaujolais Cru are only between $25 – $35 a bottle. When was the last time you enjoyed the best from a region in France for under $40? WooHOO!
More Chillable Reds – Some of these wines may not be as familiar to you, but you can find them in wine shops!
- Lighter Bodied Pinot Noirs
- Blaufrankisch (Lemberger)
- Sicilian Stunners Nerello Mascalese or Nero d’Avola or Frappato