Wine Basics

On to one of my favorite subjects….Wine!

If your anything like me your first wine experience was most likely out of a box, but now that we are “grown-ups” it’s time to expand on our wine knowledge.

Types of Wine

Wine can be divided into two different basic categories- White and Red. The basic types of Whites are Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc.

The basic types of Reds are Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Pinot Nior.

How to Pick a Wine at Dinner

First you can always ask your server (or ask for the sommelier-in house wine expert) for help or suggestions on what type of wines they would recommend. All you need to know is your price range, what types of wines you might have enjoyed in the past, and what you may be ordering that evening. If you have ordered wine before and remember liking it, look to that section again and you will find something you will like.

Serving Wine

Wine is best served in a specific glass and a specific temperature based on the type of wine. White Wines are best in a glass that holds 10-12 oz. and filled less than half way. Red Wines are best in a glass that holds 12 oz. and filled 1/3 of the way.

Most Champagne and Sparkling wines are best at 40 degrees F.

A Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio is best between 45 and 48 degrees F. A Chardonnay is best slightly warmer at 48 to 52 degrees F. The Pinot Noir is best at 60-64 degrees F, and lastly a Cabernet or Merlot is best at 64-66 degrees F. Or if you don’t have a wine thermometer on hands at all time simply remember that white wines are best served chilled while red wines should be more of a room temperature.

Commonly Used Words

Acidity- Normally refers to the tart flavors that are in a particular wine.

Body- Term referring to the way the wine feels in the taster’s mouth or the strength of a wine.

Decanting- (Normally done with Reds) When you take wine from one container to another to let the wine “breath” before serving.

Oak- Wood used for most barrels when storing wine which can affect the taste of the wine.

Steel- Another type of container used to store wine which can affect the taste of the wine.

Now that you know go out and enjoy a glass!