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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
    • WW90
    4.6 449 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $79.99
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    79 99
    79 99
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  • Meiomi Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
    Meiomi Pinot Noir 2018
    Pinot Noir from California
      4.2 613 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $18.99
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      18 99
      18 99
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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
      • V91
      • JD90
      4.1 441 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $23.99
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      30
      23 99
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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
      4.6 38 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $47.99
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      47 99
      47 99
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    • The Prisoner Wine Company The Prisoner 2018 Front Label
      The Prisoner Wine Company The Prisoner 2018
      Other Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
      • WW92
      4.6 491 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $48.99
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      48 99
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    • Chateau Angelus 6-Pack OWC (Futures Pre-Sale) 2018  Front Label
      Chateau Angelus 6-Pack OWC (Futures Pre-Sale) 2018
      Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
      • JS100
      • RP100
      • JD99
      • WS98
      • D98
      • WE98
      0.0 0 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $2,219.97
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      2,219 97
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    • Belle Glos Clark and Telephone Vineyard Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
      Belle Glos Clark and Telephone Vineyard Pinot Noir 2018
      Pinot Noir from Santa Maria Valley, Central Coast, California
      • WW91
      • WS90
      4.4 71 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $49.99
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      55
      49 99
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    • Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (3 Liter Bottle) 2018  Front Bottle Shot
      Caymus Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon (3 Liter Bottle) 2018
      Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
      • WW90
      0.0 0 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $359.97
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      359 97
      359 97
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    • Chateau Leoville Barton (Futures Pre-Sale) 2018  Front Label
      Chateau Leoville Barton (Futures Pre-Sale) 2018
      Bordeaux Red Blends from St-Julien, Bordeaux, France
      • WS99
      • WE97
      • JD97
      • JS96
      • D96
      • RP96
      0.0 0 Ratings
      Currently Unavailable $99.97
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      99 97
      99 97
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    • Apothic Red Blend 2018  Front Label
      Apothic Red Blend 2018
      Other Red Blends from California
        4.2 357 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $10.99
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        14
        10 99
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      • McManis Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
        McManis Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
        Cabernet Sauvignon from California
          3.9 230 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $11.99
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          13
          11 99
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        • Oberon Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
          Oberon Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
          Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
            4.0 151 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $21.99
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            25
            21 99
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          • Conundrum Red Blend 2018  Front Label
            Conundrum Red Blend 2018
            Other Red Blends from California
            • WW90
            4.0 16 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $22.99
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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
            3.6 191 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $9.99
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            9 99
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          • Orin Swift Cellars 8 Years in the Desert 2 2018  Front Label
            Orin Swift Cellars 8 Years in the Desert 2 2018
            Other Red Blends from California
            • WW92
            • RP92
            4.6 219 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $46.99
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            50
            46 99
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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
            4.7 8 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $179.99
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            179 99
            179 99
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          • Orin Swift Cellars Abstract 2018  Front Label
            Orin Swift Cellars Abstract 2018
            Other Red Blends from California
            • RP92
            • WS92
            • WW91
            • JS91
            4.4 139 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $35.99
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            43
            35 99
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          • Decoy Merlot 2018  Front Label
            Decoy Merlot 2018
            Merlot from Sonoma County, California
              4.3 63 Ratings
              Currently Unavailable $27.99
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              27 99
              27 99
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            • Josh Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
              Josh Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
              Cabernet Sauvignon from California
                4.2 28 Ratings
                Currently Unavailable $14.99
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                14 99
                14 99
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              • Cakebread Two Creeks Vineyards Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
                Cakebread Two Creeks Vineyards Pinot Noir 2018
                Pinot Noir from Anderson Valley, Mendocino, California
                  5.0 56 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $59.99
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                  59 99
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                • Schug Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
                  Schug Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir 2018
                  Pinot Noir from Sonoma Coast, Sonoma County, California
                  • TP91
                  • JS90
                  • WW90
                  3.9 275 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $19.99
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                • Seghesio Sonoma Zinfandel 2018  Front Label
                  Seghesio Sonoma Zinfandel 2018
                  Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
                  • WW90
                  • WE90
                  • WS90
                  4.2 330 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $19.99
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                  26
                  19 99
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                • The Prisoner Wine Company Unshackled Red 2018 Front Label
                  The Prisoner Wine Company Unshackled Red 2018
                  Other Red Blends from California
                  • WW90
                  4.3 105 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $26.99
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                  26 99
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                • Austin Hope Cabernet Sauvignon 2018  Front Label
                  Austin Hope Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
                  Cabernet Sauvignon from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
                    4.6 99 Ratings
                    Currently Unavailable $55.99
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                    55 99
                    55 99
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                  • Belle Glos Dairyman Vineyard Pinot Noir 2018  Front Label
                    Belle Glos Dairyman Vineyard Pinot Noir 2018
                    Pinot Noir from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
                    • WS91
                    4.5 25 Ratings
                    Currently Unavailable $49.99
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                    60
                    49 99
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