How to Serve the Best Wine for Your Next Gathering
It’s never a party or a special occasion without a bottle (or more) of wines. But everyone has that one bottle that’s been sitting on the kitchen countertop for so long may no longer taste as good.
What is that? Also known as a wine fridge, it is a special refrigerator for your wine bottles. You may wonder why you cannot use a standard refrigerator or put them inside cupboards and cabinets when storing wine.
Wines need a specific temperature to retain or even improve their taste. Usually, their average temperature is not more than 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Standard fridges can be as cold as 34 degrees Fahrenheit.
Another tool you will need to make your guests feel special is special wine glasses.
Wine glasses are easier to spot compared to regular ones. Their stems are longer, and their top is narrower. They also have a defined base. All these will allow you and your guests to swirl the glass without spilling the contents before drinking the wine. Doing so will unleash the aroma while retaining its quality.
Note that some people may confuse wine glasses with champagne flutes. The biggest difference is in the overall shape. Flutes have much longer stems and leaner bodies. This design helps the glass to retain the bubbles, especially of sparkling wines. This way, they look good when you serve them.
The basics of an enjoyable home party
Wines can already make or break a party, but you need more than the bottles to call it an occasion. Here are other things you need:
- Grazing Table - If you’re inviting more people, you can elevate your casual food platter to a full-blown grazing table. This is a wide spread of “pick everything you like” finger food. These include fruits, veggies, hummus, dips and spreads, pickles and olives, grapes, crackers, and dippable bread, etc. Anything that’s easy to pick and eat!
- Sound Equipment - These days, you already have the likes of Alexa and even Spotify to stream your playlist straight from the internet. You can do away with CDs if you’d like to go modern, but a mobile phone may not be enough to play nice-sounding music throughout the whole house. You can use a Bluetooth speaker for a small gathering and sound equipment for a bigger one. Don’t forget to plan ahead and get the proper electrical cables you’ll need if you are using a professional sound system.
- Table Setting - You can approach your party in two ways: formal and informal. Formal gatherings are usually sit-down parties, which means you need a dining table and some elegant chairs. Every person has a space for plates and cutlery. A casual dinner, meanwhile, can thrive even with comfortable seats and lounges. Make sure you have some extra stools on hand so people can move around and sit where they’d like, whether in the kitchen or living room.
Proper storage of wine to ensure quality
As mentioned, the essential way to store a bottle of wine is in a wine chiller. It’s just a matter of knowing what kind you need. For example, you can have an integrated wine cooler or one that fits perfectly on top of the counter.
When your kitchen already lacks space for an integrated wine fridge, the next best option is a countertop wine fridge, although this cannot store as many bottles of wine. Meanwhile, if you have the money to invest, an extensive wine collection, and enough space, you can invest in a standalone wine fridge.
When storing and serving wine, it’s also important to remember the following:
Store Wines on Their Side
While you can store them upright, you should only do so in the short-term. The better way is to store them on their side to allow the liquid to touch the cork.
Corks cannot be dry, or else, they will allow air to get inside the bottle. When it does, it can affect the taste and quality. It can also cause the bottle to expand which becomes prone to breaking.
Know the Different Kinds of Wine
The most popular types of wines are red and white, but you can also find bubbly and rose, among others. While they all come from grapes, their taste and aroma can significantly vary.
You may even find regional wines, depending on where they come from. The quality of the soil and weather can affect the final output.
Knowing the wines you have will help you know the best temperature for storage and serving. Take, for example, a bottle of red wine. Red wines need to be at a storage temperature of 55 degrees.
However, when you want to serve them, the ideal temp is between 60 and 70 degrees. In other words, they need time to warm a little before you can serve them.
More ways to enjoy your wine
You can have even more fun with serving wine with the following tips:
- Play some lovely music - Studies show that music can influence eating behaviour. Soft classical music helps your guests eat well while reducing their levels of stress. In turn, they will feel more content and happier by the end of the party.
- Serve the wine properly - You don’t need to be too professional to serve the wine, but you may still have to practice proper etiquette. For example, pour wine with a clean white cloth, which you can use to wipe the mouth.
Whether it’s a laid-back or a formal party, you can always benefit from having the best-tasting wine that you can afford. You can retain its flavour and aroma with products, such as a wine chiller.
At the end of the day, it’s the people that make it memorable. Relax and enjoy the company of friends and family.