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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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  • Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
    Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
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  • DAOU Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
    DAOU Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
    Cabernet Sauvignon from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
    • RP92
    • JD90
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  • Cellier des Dauphins Reserve Cotes du Rhone 2018  Front Label
    Cellier des Dauphins Reserve Cotes du Rhone 2018
    Rhone Red Blends from Cotes du Rhone, Rhone, France
    • D97
    4.0 388 Ratings
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  • Decoy California Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
    Decoy California Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
    Cabernet Sauvignon from California
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    • Josh Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
      Josh Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
      Cabernet Sauvignon from California
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      • Oberon Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
        Oberon Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
        Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
          4.1 280 Ratings
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        • Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2018  Front Label
          Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2018
          Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
          • WW90
          4.5 19 Ratings
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        • Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (375ML half-bottle) 2018  Front Label
          Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (375ML half-bottle) 2018
          Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
          • WW90
          4.4 86 Ratings
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        • Conundrum Red Blend 2018  Front Label
          Conundrum Red Blend 2018
          Other Red Blends from California
          • WW90
          4.2 230 Ratings
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        • Parducci True Grit Reserve Petite Sirah 2018  Front Label
          Parducci True Grit Reserve Petite Sirah 2018
          Petite Sirah from Mendocino, California
          • WE94
          4.1 16 Ratings
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        • Substance Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
          Substance Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
          Cabernet Sauvignon from Columbia Valley, Washington
          • JS93
          • JD91
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        • Hahn SLH Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
          Hahn SLH Pinot Noir 2018
          Pinot Noir from Santa Lucia Highlands, Monterey, Central Coast, California
          • TP93
          • WE91
          • D91
          4.1 121 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $24.99
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        • Trapiche Oak Cask Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
          Trapiche Oak Cask Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
          Cabernet Sauvignon from Mendoza, Argentina
          • JS92
          • TP90
          3.6 255 Ratings
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        • Smoking Loon Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 Front Label
          Smoking Loon Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
          Cabernet Sauvignon from Chile
            3.6 334 Ratings
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          • Bouchard Pere & Fils Reserve Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
            Bouchard Pere & Fils Reserve Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2018
            Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
            • WW89
            4.0 181 Ratings
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          • Wente Southern Hills Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
            Wente Southern Hills Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
            Cabernet Sauvignon from Livermore Valley, Central Coast, California
            • WE90
            4.2 85 Ratings
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          • J. Lohr Seven Oaks Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
            J. Lohr Seven Oaks Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
            Cabernet Sauvignon from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
            • WE91
            • WW89
            4.2 175 Ratings
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          • Apothic Red Blend 2018  Front Label
            Apothic Red Blend 2018
            Other Red Blends from California
              4.1 640 Ratings
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            • Hartford Court Russian River Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
              Hartford Court Russian River Pinot Noir 2018
              Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
              • JD95
              4.2 126 Ratings
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            • Zuccardi Q Malbec 2018  Front Label
              Zuccardi Q Malbec 2018
              Malbec from Uco Valley, Mendoza, Argentina
              • JS93
              • W&S92
              • RP92
              • D92
              3.8 97 Ratings
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            • Silk and Spice Red Blend 2018  Front Label
              Silk and Spice Red Blend 2018
              Other Red Blends from Portugal
              • WE90
              4.1 311 Ratings
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            • Justin Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
              Justin Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
              Cabernet Sauvignon from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
                4.0 12 Ratings
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              • Martin Ray Synthesis Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
                Martin Ray Synthesis Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
                Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
                • JS93
                4.6 6 Ratings
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              • Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2018  Front Label
                Chateau de Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2018
                Rhone Red Blends from Chateauneuf-du-Pape, Rhone, France
                • RP97
                • D95
                • JD94
                4.9 8 Ratings
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              • Bouchard Aine & Fils Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
                Bouchard Aine & Fils Bourgogne Pinot Noir 2018
                Pinot Noir from Burgundy, France
                • WW89
                3.8 104 Ratings
                Currently Unavailable $18.99
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