Wine temperature guide
Published by Alison Hardy - 10th Jan 2022
Ever wondered what the best temperature is to drink a big bold red? A crisp Rosé? Bubbles?! We asked winemaker James-Paul Marin from Enfant Terrible in South Australia to give us a few pointers to help serve wine at the temperature that brings out the best in it.
I have been asked many times over the years what the best temperature is to serve my wines. The answer is always ‘it depends.’ Most people might say ‘room temperature’ when talking about a red, but it depends on the style of red. And here is Aus, the temperature of the room! The best temperature for sparkling wine is different from white and different again for red. It then varies further based on the varietal. It’s best explained in the graphic above.
Did you now that extreme temperatures affect the enjoyment of our wines? If you were to take my 14.5% Reserve McLaren Vale Shiraz to a BBQ and get a hot day, it’s most likely going to taste like ‘rocket fuel’ due to the effect of the heat on the high alcohol and tannins in the wine. You’ll probably lose the subtle fruit flavours and characters. Dropping the temperature back down under 20oC will restore its balance and character. One way this can be achieved is with a ‘wine-sleeve’ or a wine bucket filled with water and just a little bit of ice. You can also use a wine cabinet or wine fridge if you’re lucky enough to own one.
And what of the other Enfant Terrible wines that I have at home ready to be enjoyed, you ask? Well for the Chardonnay, I suggest a temperature of around 12–13oC. Serving at this temperature will bring the wine to life and allow the subtle oak and tannins to shine through as they should. And the Savvy Blanc should be taken to a chilly 6 degrees.
It might surprise you that I recommend 10-12oC for my Rosé. The reason being that it is a serious Rosé that is dry, elegant and floral. A mix of wildflowers and dried herbs with a balanced zesty acidity – not your typical sweet Australian Rosé! This wine is quite delicate, so I actually put a warning on the label “don’t over-chill” which is easy to do as most conventional fridges are set to 3 or 4 oC, so take it out a bit before you want to serve it.
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