5 Common Questions About Red Wine

We’re big fans of red wine here at TNP. Seriously, nothing pairs better with a perfectly seared steak or with popcorn and a Scandal marathon. We’ll be honest, though – there’s a lot we don’t know about it. Should it be chilled? How long can it sit on our counter after opening? Don’t worry, Potatoheads, we put in the research and answered the five most common questions about red wine. Read below for our findings; they may surprise you….

1. Should red wine be chilled/refrigerated?

Simply put: probably. Don’t feel bad if you’ve been doing this wrong for your entire wine-drinking existence; almost everyone drinks red wine too warm. So what temperature should your red wine be? It should be between 60-65 degrees. At that temperature, the flavors of the wine will be sharp and fresh.

2. What types of red wine have the least sugar?

The drier the wine, the less sugar, and therefore the healthier the vino. Red wines tend to be drier than their white and rose counterparts, but many still have a surprising sugar content. If you want a low sugar option, check out a pinot noir or a beajoulais. Interestingly, due to the terroir, French wines tend to have lower sugar than Australian, South American and other European reds.

3. What’s a trick to getting red wine out of the carpet?

It’s best to blot the stain to remove any wine that hasn’t been absorbed yet; you can use paper towels or a clean cloth. Pour two cups of warm water into a small bowl. Mix one tablespoon of white vinegar and one tablespoon of dishwashing liquid in the warm water. Dip a sponge into the bowl and begin applying the solution directly onto the wine stain. Continue blotting until the stain has lifted, then let dry.

4. How long does open red wine last?

It depends on the wine! The more tannins and acidity the red wine has, the longer it tends to last after opening. Generally, red wine lasts three to five days in a cool place with a cork. You want to keep the wine at “cellar temperature,” which is between sixty and sixty-five degrees.

5. Is red wine actually good for your heart?

Too much alcohol is never good for the body; you have to practice moderation. But having less than six ounces three times a week certainly doesn’t hurt. Many doctors agree that something in red wine appears to help your heart, even if they can’t yet pinpoint what exactly that is. It’s possible that antioxidants, such as flavonoids or a substance called Resveratrol, have heart-healthy benefits. 

For more wine tips, consult our guide to the best dry white wines, and our favorite red wines under $30