The temperature in the UK today was pushing 30º in some places; it was in the high 20s down here in the South West; so what’s that got to do with wine?
Everything, especially when you consider that most red wines start to “fall apart” (aka taste crap) after they’re served upwards of 20º. That’s for wines that’ve been made properly; Lord help the natural wine mob in this weather, they’re supping magma.
There’s a simple remedy however, and that’s to pop your chosen red in the fridge for an hour or so (you really can’t go over with this; it’ll warm up in this kind of temperature in no time, so if you’ve over-done it, just give it a while).
What you’re doing is keeping the “volatility” down, stopping everything breaking up into its individual component parts and keeping it as a whole, just as it was intended to be. Remember, “cellar temperature” is more like 12-16º, each and every month of the year.
Tonight’s drop, Opawa Pinot Noir 2012, is a Marlborough wine that’s the junior label of Nautilus Estate. Not too much oak, fruit nicely there and present, easy-drinking, not going to go the long-haul like its brethren the Nautilus Pinot.
Nonetheless, with the gas-light burning as the sun went down, and at this perfect temp, it fitted the bill brilliantly on a sultry, humid night.
Nothing is more important when it comes to drinking wine than the temperature it’s served at; you can drink from a mug, but if it’s too hot (or cold), you’re killing it: Cardinal rule #1.