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Wine Park

Five Wine Myths That Need to Spoil In Hell! (Vol I)

See through the silliness of some of the biggest wine myths so you can enjoy wine to the fullest.
An oracle, probably a bit drunk mused: the only thing worse than ignorance is buying the lie. Wonder what tipple might have brought on that moment of clarity but it is abundantly clear that the universe of wine is plagued by a litany of myths, some borderline harmless banter and some so egregious, the only purpose is to take the fun out of savouring the joys of wine itself. So let’s herein take the veritable sledgehammer to some ridiculous yet strikingly common place myths and consign them to the bonfire of folly one last time. So, no, sparkling wine is not like soda, rose wine isn’t just for the ladies, please don’t add diet coke to the Chardonnay and freezing the Bordeaux will not make it age faster! For god’s sake….
Red Wine At Room Temperature. Not!
This myth is like a bad penny and one not to be underestimated. While this myth was an acceptable fact until 20th century Europe when even the summers were relatively cool, today this notion is plain loony. Red wine has to be served at between 16 and 18 degrees Celsius which can only be achieved in the depth of winter or very good air conditioners. Yet it’s amazing how not just home party hosts but even some restaurants and hotels that repeat offend by serving their wine warm based on this outdated and now entirely misplaced belief. But don’t you allow yourself to suffer warm, undrinkable tipple. Dispatch this myth and chill your reds down.
Wine Under Cork better that screwcap…
This misgiving is so 1990s, it’s embarrassing. While the screwcap did start off facing the perception of being cork’s cheaper substitute, it’s currency has risen considerably in the new world, especially Australia and New Zealand. Other countries, even in Europe have caught on, given the screwcap’s spotless track record compared to cork that does still spoil some wine. So please don’t scoff at having to pay top dollar for a screw capped New Zealand white or Australian red and you’ll be surprised at the stunning ferment that pour out. Screw capped wines are as good as those under cork so please let that one go.
Sparkling Wine Only In Tulip Glasses
Now sparkling wine’s had a bit of strange history of glassware choices, none more puzzling than the akward Champagne saucer which can only now be found in 1970s Bond movies. The present tulip glass which has undergone some smart design overhauls is the widely accepted choice of glass but feel free to go with a white wine glass. It isn’t unusual for connoisseurs to savour vintage Champagnes and Cavas in Sauvignon Blanc glasses, that give the wine more surface contact to breathe and release delicate flavours. So by all means, go for it.
Adding Ice To Wine Is Fine…
No it isn’t. Doesn’t matter if it’s 40 degrees out there and if everyone else around you is dunking frozen squares into their glasses. Just like the virtue of honesty, hold on to your glass and resist. Yes, drinking warm wine isn’t pleasant and does inhibit flavour and dial down the pleasure but ice does much worse, diluting and effectively changing the wine’s taste irreversibly. Doing things right at the start as in chilling the wine down considerably to compensate for the prevailing heat before opening it will avoid forcing this destructive choice. So don’t fool yourself and please hold the ice.
Red wine red meat, white wine, well…
Rules are rules and are there for a reason but the modern wine universe has virtually no rules and the turn of the 20th century that has witnessed the emergence of new wine styles and new audiences. So it naturally follows that the old food and wine pairing adage that red wine only pairs with red meats and white wines with seafood isn’t anymore relevant. While some traditionally inclined sommeliers use this approach as a thumb rule, there are plenty of refreshing examples of red wines working with seafood and white wines elevating lamb shanks and steak meals. So settle on your favourites, follow your palate and make your own vinous pairing for dinner tonight.
Of course you can store wines in a fridge…
No you can’t, not for the long term at least. There’s nothing more heart renting than seeing a bottle of white Burdundy sitting up in a fridge and its proud owner claiming its been sitting there for months, ageing gracefuly. No it hasn’t. It’s probably off already and maybe good for cooking. The fridge is meant only to oool wines for the evening or a few days at best, especially red wines under cork. The lack of humidity inside a fridge shrivels the cork and lets in oxygen which effectively destroys the wine. Wines under screwcap aren’t safe either because the constant opening of the fridge makes the wine suffer wild temperature swings and shifting of items disturbs the wine – both factors are detrimental. So please do invest in a wine cooler because it has a good purpose and you deserve to drink wines at their very best.