Whether you receive a bottle of wine as a gift or you wish to serve wine to your guests, it’s important to make sure that you follow some essential guidelines. By doing so, you will get the most out of each sip and really appreciate the aromas and flavours the wine has to offer. Here are some important wine serving tips everyone should keep in mind.
Choosing a glass
Just as there are different types of wine, so too are there different types of wine glasses. Wine serving should always be done in the right glass according to the type wine you are drinking. Red wine glasses are usually larger since they allow the wine to ‘breathe’ while white wine glasses are smaller and champagne glasses are tall and slender. Port, Sherry and sweet wines also have special glasses in which they are served.
Getting the temperature right
Proper wine serving also means that you need the bottle to be served at the right temperature. Champagne and sparkling wine should be chilled for at least a couple of hours before serving. White wines should be chilled to almost the same temperature as a bottle of bubbly. Red wines can be served somewhat warmer but there is no rule that stipulates they must be warm. Red wine can be chilled if served in the warmer months. In winter, it is usually best to serve at cellar temperature. Sweet wines can be served at various temperatures depending on the type of wine. A simple search online will reveal the best temperature for each bottle according to the wine makers.
Pop the cork
If you really want to enjoy your wine, you need to ensure that it is opened just right. The foil needs to be cut before you pierce the cork. Aim your bottle opener slightly off centre so that the ‘worm’ part of the opener twists towards the middle. Remove the cork gently but firmly to ensure that it does not break.
One of the most important steps in wine serving is decanting the bottle. This is especially important when it comes to red wine since these wines have a particularly strong flavour and aroma. It is important to allow the wine to ‘breathe’ so that the more subtle flavours can come to life. The amount of time required for decanting depends on the type of wine as well as its age. Normally, for every ten years, the wine should be decanted for one hour.
While you might be tempted to fill your glass, wine serving requires that there is some air in the glass too. In other words, you should only fill the glass to the halfway mark at the most. Not only does this allow you to really enjoy the wine tasting experience, but it also makes it easier for you to enjoy the aromas every time you take a sip.
How to hold your glass
While red wines are served at slightly warmer temperatures, white wines should be chilled. If you cup the wine glass in your hand, you will warm the glass and, in turn, the wine. This may not be a problem when it comes to red wine but it is not a good idea when drinking white wine. Instead, you should hold the glass by the stem so that you don’t transfer the heat from your hand to the wine.
By keeping all of these essential wine serving tips in mind, you will be able to really enjoy each glass. No matter what type of wine you enjoy or the quality of the bottle, proper serving practices will ensure that it will taste so much better.