Wine vs. Temperature - What do we have to know?!

Wine vs. Temperature - What do we have to know?!

What about the temperature?! 

A wine served too cold can hide faults of many kind, whereas a wine served at a too high temperature creates an unbalanced alcohol perception. You will only perceive alcohol and nothing else. Thus losing the possibility of enjoying the bouquet of aromas of your wine.

Serving temperature of red wines depends by many factors, however because of their "tannic" and less acid nature than white wines, they are usually served at higher temperatures. Young red wines having little tannins are usually served between 14 and 16° C (57 and 61° F), whereas full bodied and tannic wines can be served at 18° C (64° F). Wines aged for years in bottle, full bodied and still tannic, can be served at 18 °C (64 °F), exceptionally at 20 °C (68 °F).

Young red wines having little tannins and little structure, can also be served between 12 and 14 °C (54 and 57 °F) without being astringent and certainly being pleasing.

This rule is certainly true for "novello" wines which, thanks to their particular wine making technique, are poor in tannins and can be served cooler than other red wines, however being pleasing White wines are usually more acid than red wines and, as opposed to red wines, they are poor in tannins and therefore the sensation of astringency will be very low, practically zero. As an acid beverage becomes more agreeable at low temperatures, white wines are not usually served at high temperatures. The preferred temperature for these wines usually ranges from 10 to 14 °C (50 to 140 °F). Young, crisp and aromatic white wines can also be served at 10 °C (50 °F) whereas the less aromatic ones can be served at 12 °C (54 °F). Smooth and mature white wines, aged for some years in bottle, can stand higher temperatures and they can be served between 12 and 14 °C (54 and 57 °F).

Serving a white wine at a higher temperature than these ones, means exalting its "sweet" characteristics to the detriment of acidity and sapidity which are instead considered as pleasing and desirable characteristics in this kind of wine. The service of rose wines usually follows the same rules of white wines. However it is necessary to consider the possible tannins in these wines and serve them at a higher temperature in order not to make them too astringent. Young and crisp rose wines, tannins permitting, are served between 10 and 12 °C (50 and 53 °F), whereas the robust and full bodied ones, including the more mature ones, can be served between 12 and 14 °C (54 and 57 °F).Because of the huge quantity of existing types of sparkling wines, establishing a rule valid for all of them would make little sense. Sweet and aromatic white sparkling wines, such as Asti Spumante, should be served at a temperature of 8° C (46° F); thanks to their aromaticity they can in fact tolerate low temperatures.

Sweet red sparkling wines, such as Brachetto d'Acqui, can be served at temperatures ranging from 10 to 12° C (50 to 53° F); also in this case the most aromatic sparkling wines can be served at lower temperatures down to 8° C (46° F) whereas the ones having more tannins will need to be served at higher temperatures and up to 14° C (57° F).

Dry sparkling wines produced with the so called "Charmat method" or "Martinotti method", such as Prosecco di Valdobbiadene and Conegliano, can be served at temperatures from 8 to 10° C (46 to 46° F).

A particular consideration should be done for "classic method" sparkling wines, such as Franciacorta, and "méthode champenoise", such as Champagne. Generally these sparkling wines are served at temperatures between 8 and 10° C (46 and 53° F), however when it is about important vintage wines or however sparkling wines aged for a long time, it can also be served at 12° C (54° F) in order to allow the development of complex aromas that slowly and laboriously developed during the course of time.

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