Red Wine has always been very popular and wine stores and restaurants offer a wide variety of reds from light and fruity ones to ones that are dark, concentrated and have almost chewing texture. Its production is similar to the White one, just the grape skin is not extracted and the colour is kept. The temperature of fermentation is higher than in making white wine.
Many red wines are labelled with the grape variety: Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, etc. Of course, to enjoy wine, you don’t need to learn about all features of the grapes they are made from. But knowing a little bit about the profiles of the most popular grapes and the wines made from them will help you to be a better consumer. It will help you describe what you like and choose the wine that you will definitely enjoy.
Merlot wines are capable of great stylistic variations. These are long-lasting and well-structured wines, fruity, rich and concentrated. The Merlot wines are softer and less tannic than Cabernet Sauvignon.
Merlot wines are almost always aged in oak. It adds structure and tannin, makes them more age-worthy.
Tasting notes: plums, black and dried cherries, figs, chocolate and coffee. Also, brown spices such as clove and nutmeg can be added.
Cabernet Sauvignon is Merlot’s more famous friend. If you want to sound more “wine-educated” and fashionable you may call it just “Cab”. It is often blended with Merlot for the richness of taste.
Wines from Cabernet Sauvignon are usually highly-structured, with strong tanning and aroma of oak. Some of them can be so tannic that they are almost undrinkable when they are young.
Cabernet Sauvignon wines have been quite popular. They are full-bodied and can overpower any food they are paired with (usually, it's red meat).
Tasting notes: Cabernet Sauvignon has aromas of dark fruits, blackberry and blackcurrant and often a hint of the mint or eucalyptus. It is often oak-aged and that imparts smoky toasty aromas of tobacco, cider and vanilla.
Pinot Noir. Great Pinot Noir comes from Oregon, California, New Zealand, Germany and, of course, France. Like Merlot, Pinot Noir is capable of great stylistic varieties.
Pinot Noir that is made in Burgundy tends to be less fruity, light and more earthy. Oregon and California Pinot Noir is fruity, darker and more concentrated.
Tasting notes: fruity (strawberry, raspberry, cherry, plum), earthy (mushrooms, leather, dry leave). A combination of these aromas is seductive. The mouthfeel is silky and smooth.
Malbec. Argentinian wine with rich flavours of plum, blackberry, and back cherry. It is a great alternative to more expensive Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Malbec can be easily identified by its deep purple colour.
Tasting notes: tobacco, milk chocolate, and vanilla notes make this dry wine perfect pairing for smoky red meat.
Looking for some exclusice red wine you've never tasted before? Try our best wines from independent makers from France and Italy and discover new edges of taste of this incredible drink.