What is a Light Red Wine? (Definition & Serving TIPS)

Red wine is a broad term, and there are many different shades of red wine. The range runs from a light red wine, with a slight pink tinge, to a dark red wine with a berry-like hue.

Red wine is probably the most well-known type of wine. It is the most complex and sophisticated of all varieties, so much so that it has its classification system!

So, what is a light red wine? We’ll discuss what makes a light red wine and the most popular types of light red wine.

What Is a Light Red Wine?

light red wine
A light red wine is either a very young wine or is mixed with other wines or water to dilute the color and acidity.

What is a light red wine? A light red wine is typically an unsaturated wine made from the same grape as red wine, but it has less time to age or ferment.

Alternatively, each grape variety has a specific level of acidity. If this acidity is reduced in red wine by dilution or blending, you get a light red wine.

Try one of these light red wines with a superb flavor – Sangiovese, Pinot Noir, Grenache, or Tempranillo.

Read More: Sangiovese vs Chianti. We take a closer look at these two red wines to help you choose the right one for you!

How Is Light Red Wine Made?

Red wine is made from red grapes, which are crushed and fermented to produce the wine.

The grapes are grown in the vineyard and harvested when ripe and ready to be processed. The variety of grapes used will affect the color of the wine.

The color of light red wine may depend on the amount of time spent in the fermentation process and how much of each grape type was used to make it.

The production process for this style of wine includes fermenting it at cooler temperatures than regular red wines and adding water to dilute it.

This makes it more crisp, fruity, and palatable than more decadent varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon or Pinot noir.

Read More: Is Grenache Sweet? We explore this underappreciated red to see if it’s dry, semi-sweet, or sweet!

What to look for when Choosing Light Red Wines

  • Taste: The main reason behind looking for a light red wine is the taste. It is recommended to look for one that tastes fruity with some spice and a tinge of acidity.
  • Price: Price is a huge factor in buying red wines. You can buy a cheaper wine for a lower price.
  • ABV: Alcohol by volume is the amount of alcohol present in a wine. You can quickly tell if a wine is a light by the ABV. Light red wines can have an ABV as low as 5%, making them perfect for those who want wine without the heavy alcohol content.
  • Style: The style can vary from one type of light red wine to another, but it is an essential factor to consider when choosing which one to purchase. An acceptable amount of acidity and sweetness is balanced by the good tannins.

Read More: Tempranillo Vs Pinot Noir. Explore the similarities and differences between these two reds!

How to Serve Light Red wine

Light Red Wine in a glass
Light red wines are best served in a red wine glass to aerate the wine and release the flavors and aromas.

Light red wine can be served either chilled or at room temperature, depending on the variety.

  • Chilled: Chill the wine to around 55 degrees Fahrenheit before serving. For best results, you should use a wine cooler that is set to the exact temperature so you know it will be perfect.
  • Poured: If a light red wine is served at room temperature, it will not affect its taste or aroma. You need to pour this type of wine into glasses with a wide opening to enjoy its great aroma while releasing tannins.
  • When pouring, make sure you only fill glasses to the wide part of the flute to get maximum aeration and flavor from each glass.
  • Serving Temperature: Colder temperatures are best for most light red wines as they are fruity and refreshing wines that need to be consumed fresh out of their bottles before they start going bad.

Read More: What Pairs With Tempranillo? Discover the best sweet and savory pairings to have with your next glass of Tempranillo red.

How Long Should Light Red Wine Be Stored?

Red Wine storage
Light red wine should be consumed rather than stored.

Light red wines are best when enjoyed fresh out of their bottles. A light red wine will go bad within around 3 days of uncorking.

This is because the less tannin the wine has, the faster it goes bad.

Bottles of light red wine need to age for only 1 to 4 years to obtain their full flavor.

Read More: What Happens if You Drink Old Wine? And how can you tell if your wine is too old to drink? We have all the answers in this short guide!

What Foods Pair Well With Light Red Wine?

Food pairings for lighter red wine are generally limited to grilled meats like steak and chicken breast, grilled vegetables, and seafood dishes.

We enjoy light red wine with creamy, herby seafood meals like crab cakes or salmon fillets grilled with lemon pepper seasoning and fresh rosemary on top!

Read More: Is Tempranillo Wine Sweet? Tempranillo is a complex wine that’s often referred to as fruity and sweet – but is it really a sweet wine? Find out!

Wrap Up

Because of their lighter body, light red wines tend to be less acidic and less tannic than red or white wines, and the ABV is significantly less.

Some light red wines have half the alcohol or even less than regular reds.

This means that it is easier to drink a couple of glasses of light red wine while keeping the alcohol content in healthy moderation.

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