This piece originally appeared on Vinepair.com.
It’s presented as an either/or question, one that produces staunch loyalists on both sides of the fence. Take white wine lovers, for instance; it may be thirty-five degrees and snowing outside, with a spread of Pasta Bolognese and dry-aged steak on the table, but try to pour a hearty red in their glass instead of a chilled white, and they’ll look at you as if you have two heads (hi, Mom!). But as hot summer sunshine gives way to crisp autumn breezes, the season lends itself to comforting, warming reds. For those white wine lovers looking to dip a toe in the other side of the pool (and effectively double the amount of wines to explore), what are the best reds to ease the transition?
There are a few things that create hesitation when it comes to diving into the world of red wine. At the most basic level, there’s the matter of temperature: red wines are served warm. For those who are used to drinking wine chilled, this is a whole new experience that, frankly, can be off-putting. The fact is that, while most people agree that room temperature is ideal, red wines actually benefit from being served slightly cooler – around 65 degrees. Certain reds also taste delicious with a full chill, making them excellent choices for first-time red wine drinkers.