Why Wine Serving Temperatures Matter
By Maggie Harnett, Tasting Room Manager

wine-serving-temperatureA hot bowl of soup can warm your soul on a brisk night, and there’s nothing more refreshing than an ice cold drink in summertime. Though we don’t always stop and think about it, temperature plays in a big role in day-to-day living. In an ideal world, it would always be just right.

Well, with a little guidance, you can ensure your wine is always at the right temperature—no matter the variety. If you thought your Pinot Gris was delicious before, wait until it’s chilled to perfection! Serving a wine at the proper temperature allows its best features to shine through. You’ll savor the acidity of a Sauvignon Blanc, subtle berry aromas of a Merlot or buttery finish of a Chardonnay.

Here’s my rundown on wine service temperatures (in Fahrenheit). Follow these guidelines for the best wine tasting experience:

  • For tart, bright white wines like Pinot Gris, serve at 48-52 degrees
  • For sparkling wine, serve at 50-55 degrees
  • For rich, white wine that is oak aged like Chardonnay, serve at 58-62 degrees
  • For light red wine, such as Pinot Noir, serve at 60-65 degrees
  • For heavy red wine, such as Merlot, serve at 63-68 degrees

Temperature and humidity control is also important in wine storage. It helps preserve flavor and prevents wine from aging prematurely.

Your wine cellar or refrigerator should be kept under 70 degrees. Ideally, they should sustain a temperature of 55 degrees, if possible. Above 70 degrees, corks start to deteriorate, which can ruin the integrity of the wine. And wine begins to fall flat at that temperature. Serving wine at the appropriate temperature amplifies its flavor, aroma and finish to ensure one tasty glass of wine!

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