“I had this red in the cellar, maybe it’s a bit cold but we can drink it anyway”.
“I put this wine in the freezer, better drink it very cold”.
How many times during a dinner, perhaps with friends or relatives, have we heard these phrases? In my case perhaps too many.
The importance of temperature is one of the aspects most underestimated by wine lovers: if any of the readers have ever participated in guided tastings or in more or less professional tasting courses, they will probably have found themselves in the situation I am about to tell you about.
During a blind tasting 2 red wines were served, which the participants began to analyze, describe, compare. More or less conflicting opinions flew over their characteristics for several minutes and obviously two factions had formed. Who praised the first and who praised the second. All normal so far, except that the 2 wines were identical!
Why then this diatribe?
Due to the temperature difference, about 3/4 ° C between one and the other. Apparently not a huge amount, yet the effects observed can be important.
Let’s talk about white wines: the lower the temperature, the lighter and fresher the wine will seem. However, the perception of perfumes, proportionally lower, will pay the price. As it happens, we would have the opposite effect by raising the temperature. But even here be careful not to overdo it, otherwise the aromas will be really coarse and the perception of alcohol almost annoying – this last aspect is also particularly true with red wines.
So what is the correct temperature?
Obviously it depends from wine to wine: as a general line we can consider the following limits 14-18 ° C for reds, 10-14 ° C for whites and 6-8 ° C for sparkling wines. Obviously no one forbids us to drink, especially when it is really hot in summer, a white wine or a sparkling wine perhaps at 4 ° C. Similarly, a particularly complex bubble at 10 ° C could reserve us some great surprises from the point of view of aromas!