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A Guide to Red Wine!

delsin's picture

Red Wine - A Guide to Red Wine



Jennifer Waite 




There are several different kinds of red wine. Most wines are made from grapes, including syrah, cabernet and zinfandel varieties. If only one variety (merlot, for example) is listed on the label, the wine is varietal and is named after the grape with a capital letter.

Further complicating things, some varieties are known by two different names. This is the case with shiraz or syrah grapes. European wine makers only use the name syrah, but some Australian and American vintners use the name shiraz. Typically, this kind of wine is made in France, California and Australia.

If you aren't too familiar with red wine, you may want to start off by drinking Merlot. It has a soft flavor that is easy to introduce to people who haven't had much experience with wine. It pairs with just about any food, and is made along the western coast of America, Chile, Italy and Australia, among others.

Barbera isn't as popular as Merlot is, but it has many similar attributes. It pairs well with tomato sauces and can match just about any dish. While it has an Italian origin, it's also widespread in California.

Cabernet sauvignon is generally accepted as one of the best varieties of wine, period. A wine that usually undergoes an oak treatment, it's best when paired with simply prepared red meat. Sometimes, Cabernet sauvignon has a slight vanilla flavor to it, though it comes from the oat treatment and not the fruit itself.

Pinot noir grapes are extremely difficult to grow, but the wine tastes so good it's well worth the effort. Fantastic with chicken, salmon and lamb, the wine is made in France, California, New Zealand and Austria.

Of all of the reds, Zinfandel wine is the most versatile. Zinfandel wine can be a rich and heavy red wine or it can be a light and fruity blush wine. Found only in California, it has a zesty flavor with pepper and berry.


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delsin's picture
If you like red wine but confused about choosing the right choice then read this article, I wish that you got the right choice!
Ganesh.Dutta's picture
for red wine lovers ,it's a very useful article!
shantihhh's picture
One are not mentioned was the tanins of many cabs which set them apart for long aging and depth of flavours. Also Zinfandels vary greatly from the soft smooth flavours to the rich, fruity, heady goodness of Old Vine Zinfandels. never to be confused with that soda-pop stuff named White Zinfandel that makes me shutter with it's cloyingly sweet insidious taste and aroma. Meritage is another not to be overlooked -Take the word "merit" and combine it with "heritage." Mix well. Meritage is pronounced Meh-rih-TIJ, rhyming with HeritageWhat you have is Meritage, a relatively recent addition to the wine lexicon, coined to describe wines from California and elsewhere modeled on French Bordeaux. Back in 1989, wineries were all choosing names for their various blended wines, and it was getting hard to keep track of them all. An association was formed to try to define a "Bordeaux Blend" of grapes that was done on non-French soil. They had over 6,000 people submit choices for the name of this blend, and "Meritage" won. This is a combination of the words "Merit" and "Heritage", and shouldn't be pronounced as if it were French! What is in Meritage? First off, this can't be a mass-marketed wine. The release of Meritage must be under 25,000 cases. It has to be a "high-end" wine for the winery - it can't be their bargain basement offering. And finally, it has to be a blend of certain grapes. These are: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot. There is also a white Meritage, which is far less common. This uses Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, and Muscadelle. How does it Taste? Just like Bordeaux, since it's made with the same grapes!! There's a rich, full aroma to it. Depending on the particular blend, it can be blackberry, black cherry, spices, chocolate, and vanilla. Most Meritages have the Bordeaux signature flavors - cigar box, rich fruits, with a hefty feel. It's great with a steak, or with game meats - venison, pheasant, or so on! Meritage should be served at 64F for the best flavor. One of my favourite red wines is the lovely and full Amarone of Italy, but it merits an entire blog to satisfy a description of this very special Italian wine. Shanti/Mary-Anne
A Guide To Red Wine!