It’s hitting temperatures of nearly 30 degrees centigrade in Edinburgh today, temperatures that we haven’t seen since 2005 (I remember because that’s when we moved here!).
Mostly you’ll want to be drinking light, refreshing white and crunchy rose wines or if you’re like me, a crisp Fino Sherry. Sometimes though only red will do and may I suggest that in temperatures like these you try and chill them a wee bit? Red wine, if served too warm, can become “soupy”. The texture thickens, they lose their freshness (red wines are typically lower in acid than white/rose) and the fruit tastes flat/stale. Pop them in the fridge or an ice bucket, or add an ice cube or two. Maybe not if you’re opening Petrus or Penfolds Grange but for lighter fruitier reds that have lower levels of tannin this a great way to enjoy your red wines. The perception of tannins can increase in chilled reds so don’t chill them to far and choose something that has lowish levels of oak and alcohol eg Beaujolais-Villages, Valpolicella, Grenache and Saumur-Champigny or any oak or tannin bitterness will overpower the fresh fruit.
Chilling red is common place in Spain and Australia during the heat of the summer, with the Spanish often adding Coke and ice to make sure it really does give them the refresh they need.
If you’re drinking out don’t be afraid to ask your bartender/sommelier to chill your red slightly, if they know they’re stuff, they’ll have already popped it in the fridge for you.