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Red Wine

Learn about red wine — the range of styles, how it’s made and more ...

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What are the types and styles of red wine?

Ranging in style from light and full of finesse to bold and structured, red wine is produced in almost every wine region of the world. Though there are about 35 varieties that contribute to the majority of red wine production, countless native varieties are important not only to local culture, but to the diversity of globally traded wine. Warmer, sunnier climates produce robust and concentrated wines while cooler regions, where long, even grape ripening and thus natural acidities create some of the world’s most elegant red wines.

How is red wine made?

To make red wine, the pressed grape juice is left in contact with its skins—a process called maceration—in order to draw out color, tannins and phenols (compounds responsible for the complex aromas and flavors in wine). Occurring before, during or after fermentation, whereby yeasts turn grape sugar into alcohol, longer macerations in general produce bolder red wines (with a point of diminishing returns). Red wines benefit from a resting period of a few months to a few years in wooden barrels (or other containers) before release to the market.

What gives red wine its color?

Red grape skins give color to the finished wine through the maceration process. In general, shorter time on skins results in lighter red tones; longer time gives deeper red tones. On top of that, each grape type has a unique hue. For example Nebbiolo is typically pale garnet, Merlot is often bright ruby and Syrah can be opaque purple.

How do you serve red wine?

The idea that red wine should be served at room temperature came about in ancient France when the indoor temperatures were likely to be about 60F. Chambre, for “room” in French, described a wine that had been brought to this “room temperature” from the cellar. Today if you don’t have the luxury of keeping your red wine in a proper cellar or wine refrigerator, a trick of the trade is to put the bottle you plan to serve in the refrigerator for 30 to 40 minutes to cool it down to about 55F to 60F for lighter bodied wines and to 60F to 65F for fuller bodied wines. As for drinking red wines, the best red wine glasses have a stem and a bowl large enough to allow swirling without spilling. Aromatic reds fare best in glasses with a wider bowl to allow full release of the bouquet.

How long does red wine last?

Opened, a bottle of red wine will stay fresh in a cool, dark environment for one to two days, maybe longer. Unopened, red wines stay good for one year to several decades. Assessing how long to hold on to a bottle is a complicated science. If you are planning to strategically store red wine, seek the advice of a wine professional.

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  • Diamond Creek Volcanic Hill Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
    Diamond Creek Volcanic Hill Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
    • RP95
    • WS91
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  • Etude Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (scuffed labels) 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
    • RP95
    • WS94
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  • Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Bottle Shot
    Spottswoode Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
    • RP99
    • WS92
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    Currently Unavailable $329.97
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    329 97
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  • Opus One  1994 Front Label
    Opus One 1994
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Oakville, Napa Valley, California
    • RP92
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    Currently Unavailable $399.97
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  • Robert Mondavi Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Bottle Shot
    Robert Mondavi Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
    • RP97
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $185.00
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  • Dominus Estate 1994  Front Label
    Dominus Estate 1994
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
    • RP99
    • D95
    • WS91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $424.97
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  • Joseph Phelps Insignia 1994 Front Label
    Joseph Phelps Insignia 1994
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
    • RP98
    • WS93
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    Currently Unavailable $269.97
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  • Silver Oak Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
    Silver Oak Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
    • RP93
    • WS91
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    Currently Unavailable $149.97
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    149 97
    149 97
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  • Chateau Latour (stained label) 1994 Front Label
    Chateau Latour (scuffed label) 1994
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
    • RP94
    • WS91
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $589.97
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  • Caymus Special Selection Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
    Caymus Special Selection Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
    • RP95
    • WS93
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $259.00
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  • Chateau Leoville Barton  1994 Front Label
    Chateau Leoville Barton 1994
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St-Julien, Bordeaux, France
    • RP90
    • WS90
    0.0 0 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $189.97
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  • Dalla Valle Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
    Dalla Valle Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
    • WS94
    • RP94
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  • Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
    Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Alexander Valley, Sonoma County, California
    • RP93
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    Currently Unavailable $99.97
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  • Groth Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
    Groth Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Oakville, Napa Valley, California
    • WS94
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  • Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
    Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
    • WS95
    • RP91
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  • Dominus Estate (1.5 Liter Magnum - bin soiled label) 1994 Front Label
    Dominus Estate (1.5 Liter Magnum - bin soiled label) 1994
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Yountville, Napa Valley, California
    • RP99
    • D95
    • WS91
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    Currently Unavailable $589.00
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    589
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  • Stag's Leap Wine Cellars Fay Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon (torn label) 1994 Front Label
    Stag's Leap Wine Cellars Fay Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon (torn label) 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
    • WS92
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    Currently Unavailable $129.99
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  • Penfolds Bin 407 Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
    Penfolds Bin 407 Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Australia
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    • Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (loose capsule) 1994 Front Label
      Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (loose capsule) 1994
      Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
      • WS95
      • RP91
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      Currently Unavailable $149.00
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    • Chateau Angelus  1994 Front Label
      Chateau Angelus 1994
      Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
      • RP93
      • WS92
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      Currently Unavailable $499.97
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    • Araujo Eisele Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
      Araujo Eisele Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
      Cabernet Sauvignon from Calistoga, Napa Valley, California
      • RP95
      • WS93
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      Currently Unavailable $299.97
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    • Arrowood Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
      Arrowood Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
      Cabernet Sauvignon from Sonoma County, California
      • RP91
      • WS91
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    • V. Sattui Preston Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
      V. Sattui Preston Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
      Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
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        Currently Unavailable $99.97
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      • Neirano Barbera D'Asti 1994
        Barbera from Asti, Piedmont, Italy
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          Currently Unavailable $7.99
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        • Groth Cabernet Sauvignon 1994 Front Label
          Groth Cabernet Sauvignon 1994
          Cabernet Sauvignon from Oakville, Napa Valley, California
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            Currently Unavailable $61.99
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