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To Chill or Not to Chill: A Very Important Question

It happens to all of us…on a warm day, spending an afternoon with friends enjoying the summer months, and there’s red wine. Uh oh.

We’ve all heard that red wine should be served at room temperature. But we’ve also all had red wine that is served…at room temperature.

“Nothing is worse than a wine that is served too warm,” says Winemaker Eric Aafedt. “You can lose the body and complexity, and the alcohol can get a bit too ‘hot’…it just really isn’t pleasant.”

But Eric admits it can sound confusing. “Room temperature is pretty accurate, if you are talking about the basement of a French chateau, of course,” he chuckles. “Most of us don’t keep our homes that cool. There’s nothing wrong with putting the wine in the refrigerator for a couple minutes to chill to down before you open it.”

Steve Graham, wine steward at Nugget Market in Sacramento agrees. “I tell my customers to put their red wines in the fridge for 10-15 minutes before they plan to open them.  The bouquet will be more pronounced and the alcohol won’t be so prominent.”

And if you happen to be enjoying festivities outside? An ice bucket or ice chest will work just as well. According to Steve, it can be pretty simple.

“Put the reds in 15 minutes before you want to enjoy them, and take the whites out 15 minutes before you want to enjoy them,” he says. “This way, your wine is at the optimal temperature for appreciating it as the winemaker intended.”

Our winemaker agrees. “A lot of work goes into these wines, so we hope folks are getting to savor them as we created them: full of body, fruit, and complexity.”

So…just say ‘no’ to that ice cube. Your wine will thank you for it.