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Red Wine

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You won't find a better selection of red wines to shop from around the world than at Total Wine & More!

What are the styles of red wine?

Red grapes produce an amazing array of red wine types: from the boldest, heartiest big reds, to elegant and structured dry red wines, to sweet and simple picnic sippers. So much depends on where grapes are from and what the winemaker does with them, but the most important factor is the variety of the grape itself.

What are the different kinds of red wine?

Did you know there are only 32 major kinds of red wine grapes? Of course, winemakers can make red blend wines or do different things in the cellar, so there's a lot of variety. Here are some of the most popular types of red wine, according to the acreage of vineyards planted internationally:

What are popular regions for red wine?

Anywhere on the globe where you find vineyards, you'll find red wine. Red wine is an ancient beverage that's been enjoyed since 7000 BC. Winemaking started in ancient Egypt and has been a part of every significant civilization ever since.

Today, the top wine-producing countries in the world are:

What's the proper way to serve red wine?

The proper way to serve red wine depends on the style of wine, but all of them should be served at least slightly chilled or at least around cellar temperature. For every still red wine, just put the bottle into the refrigerator for 20 minutes before serving, and it will be at the perfect temperature, which is around 57 degrees.

Since Pinot Noir is very aromatic, it's served in a special Burgundy glass with a wide bowl to capture the beautiful bouquet. For sparkling red wines like Lambrusco and Brachetto, you can chill them down to 47 degrees, just like other sparkling wines. Serve those in a flute or a tall stemless glass to help the bubbles form.

What red wine is the sweetest?

All red wines start with sweet red grapes (or purple grapes) so that any wine varietal can be made in sweet style. But hands down, the sweetest red wines are dessert wines that are intentionally produced, so some of the sugar stays in the wine.

If you love sweet red wines, look for:

  • Brachetto d'Acqui
  • Lambrusco Amabile
  • Ruby Port

Some wines that are made in a fruitier style with a hint of sweetness can include:

  • Malbec
  • Merlot
  • Shiraz
  • Zinfandel

To find the sweet red wines that you'll like, talk to a team member on your next visit to Total Wine & More or check out our Guide to Dessert Wines.

What are popular dry red wine styles?

Most of the popular dry red wine styles are the ones you know and love; Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, and Shiraz. If you like these five wines, can we suggest some other dry red wines with a similar flavor profile?

  • If you like Cabernet Sauvignon, try Cabernet Franc
  • If you like Merlot, try Malbec
  • If you like Pinot Noir, try Grenache or Pinotage
  • If you like Zinfandel, try Primitivo
  • If you like Shiraz, try Syrah.

What is the smoothest kind of red wine?

The smoothest red wines are the ones that have lower tannins or are made in a style where the wine has an ideal balance of fruit, alcohol, and tannin.

Some of the smoothest red wines are Pinot Noir, Grenache, Sangiovese (used in Chianti Classico), Beaujolais, Zinfandel, Shiraz, Merlot, and Malbec. We also love Amarone, a very smooth and concentrated style of dry red wine from Valpolicella in Italy that is like drinking chocolate-covered cherries. And of course, sweet red wines such as Port, Lambrusco, and Brachetto d'Acqui are very smooth and easy to enjoy.

Making the transition from sweeter red wines to dry ones can be tough at first because dry red wines like Cabernet Sauvignon have a very noticeable amount of tannin. Any red wine will seem smoother if you drink it along with food that has a high-fat content, such as cheese, a hamburger, or a steak.

What are the most popular red wines to drink?

For a list of our most popular red wines of the year, check out our Top 20 Wines of 2020 list.

How do you remove red wine stains?

So, you spilled some red wine and need to remove the stain? We created a quick and handy guide on helping you.

Visit our How to Remove a Red Wine Stain page to learn the tips!