Easy Hacks For Chilling Wine Fast
While it’s always best to plan things out, life doesn’t always end up that way. So, when you’re in a crunch for time, here are some simple hacks that will help both you and your wine chill out:
- Salty ice bath: Find a container that’s large enough to fit the entire wine bottle and fill it with water, ice cubes, and salt. Then, fully submerge the bottle of wine. As it turns out, salt brings down the freezing point of water, which means you can chill your wine faster in 15 minutes or so.
- Freezer: Another fast fix you may have already tried is throwing your wine in the freezer. Do this 30 minutes before serving. Just set an alarm to prevent the bottle from cracking or exploding all over your freezer.
- Ice cubes: As much as it pains us to say this, if you’re really desperate to quickly chill a glass of wine, throw in an ice cube or two. Because the ice cubes will dilute the wine taste as they melt, only use this for unoaked whites or rosés that won’t suffer too much from the added water. You could also use reusable ice cubes, but they’ll warm up after a while, so have plenty on hand.
- Frozen grapes: A better alternative to ice cubes, try freezing some color-coordinated grapes that you can throw into your glass of white, rosé, or sparkling wine. They won’t dilute your wine and they add texture to your drink. Plus, they look pretty!
Your Cheat Sheet To Serving Wine
Throwing a successful dinner party is as much about how you serve your wine as what you serve. Too many people pour wine at the wrong temperature and, even worse, into plastic cups, destroying its decadent flavors and aromas.
Its time to step up your entertaining game. Serve your bottlings at perfect temperatures and in proper stemware. Heres everything you need to know.
Standards Of Proper Wine Service
Certain traditions and rituals accompany the service of all types of wine. Of course, you can select the steps of service that are best for the level of formality in your dining room.
Prepare your servers and bartenders to be ready to talk about your wine list. Customers might ask about origins, blend types, and flavor notes. Staff wine tastings or tastings during training are a great way to educate your servers and have a little fun after a shift.
The level of wine service that you want your servers to perform should be clearly communicated. Tell your servers where to place wine glasses on the table, how to position bottles and chillers, and how many steps of service they should observe.
These are the highlights of proper wine service find the most detailed guide to proper wine service here, from the Court of Master Sommeliers.
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Tips To Drinking Red Wine
With such a wide variety of red wine types available out there, it can be a little intimidating to sit down in front of a red wine flight. Below, we have outlined a basic tasting guide that can help you through the process of not just drinking, but truly experiencing the glass of red wine sitting in front of you.
Use The Right Glasses
You can pretty much serve wine in a goblet or chalice if you wanted to but it is better to use a wine glass. Believe it or not wine glasses are designed to allow for oxygen to have a wider contact with the wine which allows the wine to breathe, getting better flavor and aromas out of your wine. There are glasses for all types of wines, liquors, champagne, etc. They are all designed to enhance the experience of the drink.
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Things You Should Know
- After opening a bottle, re-cork it so that the wine stays fresh longer, and decant red wines that are 5 years old or more.
- Serve white wine in small-bowled glasses, red wine in large-bowled glasses, and sparkling wine in tall, thin glasses.
- Serve white wine first, followed by red and sweet wines, and pour it in a swift, steady motion until the wine glass has 5-6 ounces of wine.
The Order To Serve Wines
If you are preparing for a wine tasting, feel free to create the wine list of your choice. That being said, one wine naturally leads to another, and the one that is sampled first should not overpower the next in line. It is therefore advisable to serve your younger, lighter, more subtle and delicate wines first, before going on to sample your older, more powerful, richer and more full-bodied wines. An elegant serving tray and a few coasters for wine glasses, for example, will highlight the special care you have taken in preparing this simple wine-tasting ritual, accompanied by light savory or sweet appetizers, depending on the pairings you have chosen.
If you are preparing a wine list for a lunch or dinner, it is customary to serve the white wine before the red wine, but this is not strictly compulsory. The same wine tasting rules should be respectedgradually building up to stronger wines with more complex aromas and a more robust body of tanninsbut, above all, your wine selection should be tailored to the food pairings you will be savoring throughout the meal.
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Oak Ageing And Structure
Certain grape varieties just have more tannin, colour and potential to create full, structured wine than others.
Yet the age of the wine and also how it has been handled in the cellar can affect things.
This Bonterra young red 2018 from Mendocino County in California, for instance, is made from Grenache with Malbec, yet its produced in a style that would be ideal when served chilled, according to Chris Wilson.
If youve had a particular wine before and know the producers style then youll have some clues about what to expect in the bottle.
As a rule, a fuller, more structured red wine can handle slightly higher serving temperatures.
Chilling a red wine like this might amplify any oak or tannin present to the point where things could taste out of balance.
How To Serve & Present Ros Wine
Serve rosé chilled but not ice cold. The ideal temperature is between 4°C and 10°C . As a general rule, the higher the quality of rosé, the warmer the serving temperature.
Present rosé in its bottle. After opening the bottle, you should place it in a bucket of water and ice to keep it chilled.
It is good etiquette to open the bottle at the dining table.
Serve rosé wine in white wine glasses. Hold the bottle , never by its neck or cork. Fill the glass between and ½.
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Best Serving Temperatures For Red And White Wine
White wine serving temperature
- White wine should be chilled, but dont serve it too cold! Why not? Because the flavour and bouquet will be suppressed.
- Straight from the fridge is too cold for most white wine, except sparkling and dessert.
- Dry white is best served at around 10°C, so ideally you should take it out of the fridge about 20 minutes before serving.
- Full-bodied white, oaked Chardonnay for example, is best at around 12°C, so take it out about 30 minutes beforehand.
Red wine serving temperature
- Red wine should be served at room temperature . But dont serve it too warm! Why not? Because, at around 22°C red wine starts to fall apart and will taste soupy.
- So, if you keep your central heating turned up high, you may need to chill a red wine before serving. Likewise in summertime when, even in the U.K., temperatures can go well above 22°C.
- Light reds, such as many from the Loire Valley or Beaujolais, taste much better when chilled to 15°C.
How Long Does Wine Keep After Opened
Most wine wont last through the night if the bottle is left open. Here are a few tips to preserve open wines for much longer:
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Red Wine Can Be Stored In Different Ways
Whether youre wanting to put away a fine wine for a special occasion twenty years in the future or just want to know how to store your table wine to prevent it from spoiling, red wine needs to be stored in a cool, humid place.
If you only buy red wine occasionally, you can probably get away with storing your wine in a kitchen fridge. However, if you want to keep wine at its optimal quality either for the short term or the long term, wine coolers are well worth the investment.
This article was reviewed for accuracy by Phoebe Fynn. Phoebe Flynn is a wine specialist and educator on a mission to make wine more fun and accessible. Phoebe passed her Court of Master Sommeliers Level One Exam last October and is currently preparing to sit her Level Two Exam this August. She believes wine is a lifelong study and vows to never stop learning. Follow her wine journey on Instagram @yourwinefriend.
Properly Storing Red & White Wine
If you are the type of person that likes to buy multiple bottles of wine at a time, or like to always make sure you have a bottle on hand for any occasion, then youre most likely going to be storing some bottles for longer periods of time.
In the case of long-term storage, there are some things youll want to make sure you do to keep the wine from going bad.
And yes, wine can go bad over time if improperly stored.
Unlike serving temperature, which well discuss further down, there is no difference in the long-term storage of red versus white wine. All of your wine can be stored in the same way as long as you adhere to the following rules.
1. You want to make sure that your wine is stored in a cool, dark, location. A wine cellar or a basement are perfect places to store your wine. If you dont have either of those, a wine cabinet with a door that shields the bottle from light, is another great option.
Light can cause damage the wine and cause it to lose the flavor that the winemaker created. By keeping it away from sunlight, you can ensure that your wine is protected.
Temperature wise, you want to make sure that your wine is stored somewhere where the temperature remains between 45-65 degrees Fahrenheit. You also want to make sure that the humidity level is around 70 percent. The humidity will help prevent the cork from drying out, which leads us to our next tip.
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Sparkling Wine Should Be Served Ice Cold 40 To 50 Degrees
We like to put our bubbly in the freezer about an hour before we pop it but dont forget about it or youll have an explosion. If youre short on time, you can also place the bottle in an ice bucket for 30 minutes and have similar results. The ice cold temperature will keep the bubbles fine rather than foamy. After you open the bottle and pour the first glasses, you should place the open bottle on ice until the entire bottle is finished.
Red Wine Etiquette: The Worst Mistakes
The Rude Index identifies and ranks negative behaviors.
A high score means that the behavior has the potential to trigger a conflict with others. A medium score means that the behavior risks making you look inelegant and unsophisticated. More about the Rude Index and its methodology here.
Avoid the worst red wine etiquette mistakes.
- 10/10. Getting drunk.
- 7/10. Drinking shots of red wine.
- 7/10. Pairing red wine with the wrong food or aromas.
- 6/10. Not holding the glass by the stem.
- 5/10. Adding ice to red wine.
- 4/10. Serving full-bodied red wine cold.
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Know When To Decant Red Wines
Letting a wine “breathe” is a well-known technique for reds, particularly young highly-structured wines made from the likes of Nebbiolo, Sangiovese and Carignan, as well as some Cabernet-based wines, where the tannins can be a little aggressive in their early years.
Just removing the cork from the bottle will make next to no difference on these wines, as you simply dont get enough oxygen to the liquid, so you really do need to decant them for at least an hour.
Older wines can be delicate so be careful about decanting for too long. Try the wine and you can always pour it gently back into the bottle if its ready. Thats known as double-decanting and is a useful technique if youre taking a bottle to a dinner party where there wont necessarily be enough time to decant it properly once you arrive.
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How Long To Chill Wine And Other Chilling Tips You Should Know
As self-described wine experts or sommeliers, if you will, we know a thing or two when it comes to pouring the perfect glass of wine. We’ve experienced the utter horror when our lips made contact with a warm chardonnay, and we would never wish that upon anyone, even our competitors or worst enemies.
Therefore, we took some time out of our super busy schedules to outline some tips on pouring the perfect glass of wine. Assuming you have a great bottle of wine or a can of Bev, you must do your part to live up to your wine’s expectations. And although wine doesn’t talk, we know for sure that they would share that the perfect glass of wine has everything to do with temperature.
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Red Wine Should Be Served Cool 60 To 70 Degrees
The most common misconception with red wine is that it is ideal to serve it at room temperature, when in fact serving it cool is the best way to enjoy it. To cool red down to its proper temperature, we like to place it in the fridge an hour before serving it. For quicker results, you can put it in the freezer for just 15 minutes. After opening and either decanting or pouring the first glasses, just as with white we like leaving the wine out on the table to slowly warm.
Core Grapes & Wines
How To Serve Red Wine
Red wine is meant to be served at 15-18 C or 58-64 F. Sometimes that range is called room temperature, but dining rooms tend to be a bit warmer than that. Your guests might request a decanter to let a red wine breathe. This allows the tannins to oxidize in reaction with the oxygen in the atmosphere. After a wine breathes it tastes more mellow.
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Dont Overfill The Glass
It varies by glass size and shape but, in general, you should pour about a quarter to a third of the way up. That again allows the air to get to the wine, particularly if you swill it gently, encouraging the release of aromas but it also means that the wines arent warming up too much sitting in the glass.
Nearly Every Red Wine Tastes Better Decanted
is to pour wine into a glass pitcher or wine decanter and let it sit for about 30-45 minutes. The faster way is to use a wine aerator which decants wine almost instantaneously.
With the exception of very old red and white wine, almost no wine will be harmed by decanting it , so it becomes a Why not? situation.
If you buy very affordable wine on a regular basis, its not uncommon to smell rotten egg or cooked garlic. This happens even on some fine wines. Despite their sulfur-like aroma, these smells are not from sulfites nor are they bad for you.
Its a minor wine fault that is caused when wine yeast doesnt get enough nutrients while fermenting, often during large, industrial-grade fermentations.
TIP: Rotten egg aromas in wines can be removed by stirring the wine with an all silver spoon or, if youre in a pinch, a piece of sterling silver jewelry.
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Ideal Serving Temperature For Wine
Does wine serving temperature matter? Imagine it this way: does lemonade taste better at room temperature or ice-cold? Here are some best practices on wine serving temperature based on style of wine.
Serve red wines slightly cooler than room temperature, between 6268 degrees F .
Generally speaking, serve white wines slightly warmer than fridge temperature, between 49-55 degrees F .
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- Sparkling and Light-Bodied White Wines: Ice Cold between 3845°F / 3-7°C
- Rosé and Full-Bodied White Wines: Fridge Cold between 4455°F / 7-12°C
- Light and Medium-Bodied Red Wines: Cool between 5560°F / 12-15°C
- Bold Red Wines: Slightly Cool between 6068°F / 15-20°C
- Dessert Wines: Depends on style.