Remember that show MythBusters? Well, consider this your crash course MythBusters in wine. Sometimes information gets passed down through the years that may have changed or not be true altogether.
Did you know?
Before jumping into what’s not true, let’s take a look at some basic facts about good ol fermented grapes.
- Grapes are the most planted fruit around the world.
- It was forbidden for women to drink wine back in ancient Roman times.
- Swirling wine in your glass isn’t for show, it brings out the aromas, or scents, of the wine.
- There are over 10,000 varietals, or types, of wine!
Even though these are just some basic facts, they’re nice to have in your back pocket in case you need a quick and easy go-to fact for an ocassion.
The myths debunked
Not all wine facts are created equally. In fact, some of them aren’t really facts at all.
Myth 1. Sniff the wine cork
There really isn’t a point to do this unless the cork is so rotten it smells. What you should do with the cork instead is feel it for moisture and look at it to determine if the wine’s been stored properly.
Myth 2. Screw cap wines are less quality than corked wines
Screw cap wines are actually just more affordable bottling methods and doesn’t have anything to do with the quality of the wine. Some makers prefer the oxidation protection from twist off bottles rather than corks.
Myth 3. Drink red wine at room temperature
Chilling your red wines for 15 minutes in the fridge before drinking it can be really beneficial, especially for red wines higher in alcohol. Drinking your reds at room temperature can give off a ‘hot’, unpleasant flavor.
Myth 4. Always decant red wine for 2 hours or more
Older red wines don’t actually need to be disturbed with decanting as much as younger, more tannic wines. If you have a wine that is tannic, or bitter upfront, decanting for even as little as 30 minutes can help.
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Myth 5. You need a wine fridge to properly store wine
Unless you’re planning to systematically age some wine for years and years, you don’t need a wine cellar or fridge. You can store your bottles in a dark, cool space on a rack in your home. No fridge necessary.
Myth 6. Organic wines don’t give you headaches
It’s all alcohol. And drinking alcohol in excess is genereally going to give you a headache. Next time you think it’s a bottle of red that gives you a headache, check the alcohol content.
Myth 7. Aging wine makes it better
Not all wines are meant to be aged. In fact, a lot of wines are meant to be drank between 6 months and 2 years. Sometimes the maker will specify on the bottle, but if in doubt, consult Google!
Myth 8. Pair meats with Reds, fish with Whites, and desserts with Sweet wines
Wine pairings are not as black and white as some people may make them seem. It depends on the food, the wine, and most importantly, your personal preference.
Learn more about wine and food pairings for beginners.
Wine is what you make it
A lot of the nuances of wine come from personal opinions. Those ratings and tasting notes from sommeliers and wine professionals? Opinions. And it’s totally find to disagree and create your own.
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