Enjoying wine with dinner, with friends, or even with your favorite book is a time-honored tradition that never gets old. But with thousands of wines in the world to choose from, how do you make sense of them? Find out what makes different wines unique and how best to enjoy the five most popular wine types in the world.
Cabernet Sauvignon is often compared to Merlot. But, many believe that its taste is something that’s incomparable and that’s why it is known as “King of Red Grapes”. This wine is quite popular amongst the American wine-drinkers. Especially known for its “dark color”, this wine is dry and has a high level of tannin.
It is best sipped with red meat dishes, like steak and lamb, heavy cream dishes, and dark chocolate desserts.
Red wines made from the dark-skinned grape known as Syrah are some of the most popular wines on the market today. Known as the man’s wine — because like most men, Shiraz is steady, dependable and not a wine to be messed with — both Shiraz varietals and blended wines have a distinct flavor that the general public has come to love. While we may know these wines as Shiraz, in its country of origin, France, these wines are labeled as Syrah wines, but still share the same robust and full-bodied experience.
Most Shiraz wines are best enjoyed with red and/or game meats as well as full-bodied cheeses.
Chardonnay is another popular white wine. It was born in the “Burgundy region of France”, and there it is known as White Burgundy. It is grown in a variety of climatic condition.
Chardonnay wines can be paired with poultry, pork and seafood dishes, and anything with a lot of butter or a heavy cream base. Serve Chardonnay chilled slightly with Roast Chicken or Tartiflette.
Merlot is known to be the second most popular and delicious red wine in America. For the first time, this grape was used by a French winemaker in the late 1700’s in the Bordeaux region. From that day forward, this wine became popular globally and is recommended to any new comer. The softness of it’s grape fruit is really what makes the wine undeniably full of taste.
Merlot pairs best with earthy, hearty dishes. Lighter dishes, including many types of fish, will clash with the bold flavor of this wine.
Gewurztraminer is a white wine that is easy on the palate, which makes it enjoyable for the beginner, yet its complexity will envelope your mouth in a silky finish that’s both long and rapturous. As a grape, Gewurztraminer performs best in cooler climates, and although it’s grown in Canada, the U.S., Australia, Italy, Germany, and Israel, you’ll find the best varietals coming from Alsace, France. If you opt for a German varietal, expect a dryer wine, while those from Alsace will be slightly sweeter.
Gewurztraminer is ideal for cutting through a greasy meal, but not any kind of grease; serve it with grilled seafood or shellfish with a mayonnaise sauce, sushi, and fatty fish (salmon or tuna). The recommended serving temperature: 50F to 53.6F.