A Wine’s Serving Temperature: a Matter of Life and Death?
I’m sorry to have misled you, drinking a wine at the wrong temperature is not life endangering whatsoever. But now that I’ve got your attention, I do want to make a point. Imagine you’re flying a little airplane on your own. You’re flying across a huge ocean and there’s no land to be seen. Suddenly your plane malfunctions and you crash in the ocean. Spoiler alert: you’re going to die.
But the tempo you’re going to die at all depends on the temperature of the water. If the water is 5°C/41°F, your body will lose all its vital functions in 30 to 90 minutes. If the water is 10°C/50°F, your chances at survival are slim unless someone saves you in 60 to 360 minutes time. Now if you’re lucky and you crash in an ocean that has a temperature of 20°C/68°F, there is a chance at survival! (At least if someone finds you before you get eaten by a shark or starve to death).
Now if temperature matters in a situation like that, why shouldn’t it matter to wine? Let’s say you bought a beautiful red wine in France and you want to drink it next time your parents-in-law come for dinner (let’s be honest the only way you’ll survive that evening is by drinking a delicious glass of red wine…. or 3.) You’ve stored the bottle in your storage room or wine cabinet at a room temperature of 23°C/73°F. Now depending on the grape, the serving temperature of a red wine can vary between 14°C/57°F and 19°C/66°F. Now if you bought a Cabernet Sauvignon and you’re drinking it at room temperature, you’re off 6°C/11°F because you’re supposed to drink a Cabernet Sauvignon at 17°C/62°F
You don’t really think about it but a 6°C/11°F difference changes the whole taste of your wine, the same way that the difference in water temperature will affect your survival rate and time of death (ok maybe we are being a little dramatic here).. but next time you decide to open a nice bottle of wine, think twice about how you’ll serve it. QelviQ, Your Personal Sommelier can always help you take the guess work out of it all!
Wine lover? Want to learn even more? Download your FREE 64 page e-book!
"Hi l am Wim, sommelier, and wine enthusiast just like you! My fellow sommeliers understand the importance of serving wine at the correct temperature. They know that if wine is too warm, it will lose its flavors and complexities, and if wine is served too cold, it will numb your taste buds. A few world renown sommeliers and myself will explain this further, and share some interesting (taste) case studies."