This is why red wine tastes different in the summer


One of the best things about summer is all the al fresco dining and the lack of shame about having a drink (or two) in the sunshine – after all, you’ve got to make the most of the long evenings, right? However, are you paying attention to what you’re choosing to drink?

Most people tend to opt for refreshing beverages like Pimm’s, Aperol Spritz, rosé or gin and tonic during the hotter months, but if you’re a red-wine lover who stays true to their favourite tipple, you may have noticed that it tastes a little different than usual at the moment – and it’s all down to the heatwave.

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Research by the Australian Wine Research Institute states: “Excessive storage temperatures will have a marked effect on the shelf life of bottled wine. Any storage place where the temperature exceeds 25C for long periods and 40C for short periods can affect wine quality.”

With temperatures currently regularly hitting 28 degrees plus in the UK, this does not spell good news for those following the typical behaviour of leaving red wine to sit in room temperature.

So, what should you be doing differently?

Realistically, if you don’t have a cellar or very shaded room that keeps consistently cool, the best way to preserve your bottles of red wine is to keep them in the fridge during the summer months.

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If you want to enjoy it at room temperature, take the bottle out around one hour before you pour it and it should be the perfect temperature.

However, what many people don’t realise is that if you buy the right type of red wine, it can be delicious cooled – and this is particularly the case with natural wines.

When selecting these, you want to look for the lighter varieties such as Pinot Noir, Gamay, Corvina, Tempranillo, Lambrusco, Rioja Crianza and Cabernet Franc. Drinking these chilled will allow the notes of the wine to become more pronounced as opposed to the richer, fuller taste you get with room-temperature wine.

This way, you can still enjoy a red all summer long without sacrificing flavour.

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