Whether you’re a wine lover looking to get into the reds, or a novice pretending to know what they’re talking about at dinner, there are many different types of wines to choose from. Each has its own unique taste and a bit of history behind it. Wine is such a big part of the culture, from its mention in mythical stories to being consumed by kings and queens, but it can be intimidating to understand the various classifications. A little knowledge goes a long way and can make that workday meal special or turn your hangout with friends into an experience.
A good place to start for those who are interested in trying more of a robust red is Merlot. It has a fruity sweetness and doesn’t leave your mouth pucker from tannins as much as a heavier Cabernet Sauvignon would. The climate where the grape is grown also plays a role in what you can expect. Grapes from warmer climates tend to have riper, jammier fruit qualities while those from the Old World may be earthy in nature with aromas like potting soil or wet leaves.
Another great option for those who are looking to branch out from lighter reds is Zinfandel. It can have a sweet taste or a robust and dry taste, depending on the climate it is grown in and what kind of oak is used to age it. It is also known to have fruity flavors or aromas of berry or raspberry and can be a great pairing with pasta dishes.
If you’re more of a bold wine drinker and want to buy a strong red wine online, you can look for Syrahs or Shiraz from the New World or Petit Sirah or Tannat from the Old World. These wines have high alcohol content, so it’s important to be aware of how much you’re drinking. These wines can have a lot of body and are usually paired with something hearty like beef or lamb.
Those who aren’t into such bold wine should start with a lighter Pinot Noir from Italy or Spain and see what they think of it. It can have a light fruity sweetness and also has an earthy quality to it, depending on where the grape is grown and how it’s made.
The best way to find the right red wine is just to try it! Take a sip, breathe in the aroma, and feel how it makes your tongue and teeth feel. Don’t forget to take a sip of water between each glass to help cleanse your palate. The more you practice, the more you’ll become familiar with what you like and dislike. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and have fun! Wine is a beautiful thing and is meant to be enjoyed with friends. The more you learn about it, the better you’ll be able to make it match your mood. Cheers!