No, very much not a snob topic! If you have ever drunk cold red wine or “very warm” wine of any sort, you can quickly understand why certain temperatures favour certain types of wine.
There are a lot of articles, temperature and grape variety charts out there telling us what to do. Most wine drinkers in my experience do not keep a thermometer in their top pocket so we will try and keep it simple. Let’s start by dividing wine into 3 categories for this #WineTip.
Firstly dry white still and sparkling wines (including champagne but excluding vins liquoureux, dessert late harvested wines and stickies). Dry white wines should be served chilled and 8°C / 45°F is a great target, which typically corresponds with a modern day “less cold” fridge setting. Rosés style wines should also be included in this category.
Secondly red wines. Beware the old British benchmark of “room temperature”, which was invented well before central heating arrived! 16°C / 65°F is a good goal – so on today’s scale, that’s a cool dining room! Too warm and the alcohol and flavours will overpower you. Too cold and you won’t taste very much at all! Store red wine in a cool dark place and depending on the season, where you will be serving it…bring it out an appropriate time before serving to achieve that temperature.
Finally sweeter wines,12°C / 55°F is optimum. Store in the bottom of the fridge but bring them out before serving to warm up a bit and then keep term cool in a double wall plastic wine cooler.