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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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  • Tapiz Black Tears Malbec 2014  Front Label
    Tapiz Black Tears Malbec 2014
    Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina
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  • Sur de los Andes Malbec Cabernet Sauvignon Premium Blend 2014  Front Label
    Sur de los Andes Malbec Cabernet Sauvignon Premium Blend 2014
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Mendoza, Argentina
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  • Bodegas Vega Sicilia Valbuena 2014  Front Label
    Bodegas Vega Sicilia Valbuena 2014
    Other Red Blends from Ribera del Duero, Spain
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  • Ziobaffa Organic Toscana 2014 Front Label
    Ziobaffa Organic Toscana 2014
    Sangiovese from Tuscany, Italy
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  • Castellani Sangiovese 2014 Front Label
    Castellani Sangiovese 2014
    Sangiovese from Tuscany, Italy
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  • Cuerno Ribera del Duero 2014 Front Label
    Cuerno Ribera del Duero 2014
    Tempranillo from Ribera del Duero, Spain
    • JS92
    3.6 14 Ratings
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  • Mayacamas Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 Front Label
    Mayacamas Cabernet Sauvignon 2014
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Mt. Veeder, Napa Valley, California
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    • TP94
    • W&S92
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  • Tour Saint Christophe Les Terrasses de Saint Christophe 2014 Front Label
    Tour Saint Christophe Les Terrasses de Saint Christophe 2014
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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    • WW92
    • JS90
    3.8 234 Ratings
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  • Chateau L'Evangile Blason de L'Evangile 2014 Front Label
    Chateau L'Evangile Blason de L'Evangile 2014
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pomerol, Bordeaux, France
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    • RP90
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  • Sur de los Andes Malbec Reserva 2014 Front Label
    Sur de los Andes Malbec Reserva 2014
    Malbec from Mendoza, Argentina
    • WE91
    3.9 215 Ratings
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  • Peregrine Pinot Noir 2014  Front Label
    Peregrine Pinot Noir 2014
    Pinot Noir from Central Otago, New Zealand
    • W&S92
    • WE91
    • D91
    4.1 19 Ratings
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  • Chateau du Bousquet  2014 Front Label
    Chateau du Bousquet 2014
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Cotes de Bourg, Bordeaux, France
    • JS91
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  • Chateau Ste. Michelle Ethos Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2014  Front Label
    Chateau Ste. Michelle Ethos Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2014
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Columbia Valley, Washington
    • JS93
    • RP92
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  • Cuvelier Los Andes Grand Malbec 2014  Front Label
    Cuvelier Los Andes Grand Malbec 2014
    Malbec from Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina
    • JS94
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  • Marques de Riscal Baron de Chirel 2014  Front Label
    Marques de Riscal Baron de Chirel 2014
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
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  • Argiano Brunello di Montalcino 2014 Front Label
    Argiano Brunello di Montalcino 2014
    Sangiovese from Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy
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    • RP91
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  • Chateau Ste. Michelle Canoe Ridge Estate Vineyard Merlot 2014  Front Label
    Chateau Ste. Michelle Canoe Ridge Estate Vineyard Merlot 2014
    Merlot from Columbia Valley, Washington
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  • Bodegas y Vinedos Pintia  2014  Front Label
    Bodegas y Vinedos Pintia 2014
    Tempranillo from Toro, Spain
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  • Andrew Will Winery Sorella 2014 Front Label
    Andrew Will Winery Sorella 2014
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Columbia Valley, Washington
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    • RP97
    • JS94
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  • Antinori Pian Delle Vigne Brunello Di Montalcino 2014  Front Label
    Antinori Pian Delle Vigne Brunello Di Montalcino 2014
    Sangiovese from Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy
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  • Benjamin Romeo La Cueva del Contador 2014 Front Label
    Benjamin Romeo La Cueva del Contador 2014
    Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
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    • D91
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  • El Enemigo  Mendoza Gran Enemigo 2014  Front Label
    El Enemigo Mendoza Gran Enemigo 2014
    Other Red Blends from Mendoza, Argentina
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  • Robert Sinskey Point of View 2014  Front Label
    Robert Sinskey Point of View 2014
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Carneros, California
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    • Giovanni Rosso Barolo 2014  Front Label
      Giovanni Rosso Barolo 2014
      Nebbiolo from Barolo, Piedmont, Italy
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      • WS90
      • W&S90
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    • Trinchero Mario's Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 Front Label
      Trinchero Mario's Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2014
      Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
      • D94
      • WE92
      4.8 22 Ratings
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