Not sure how to choose a red wine to complement your meal? If you’re new to red wine or don't have time to browse at the wine shop, this reliable chart can help.

If You Want a . . . Try . . .
Crisp, light-bodied red wine to go with light meat dishes, sausage, hamburgers, pasta, pizza, or casseroles
Bardolino or Valpolicella
Beaujolais
Inexpensive U.S. Pinot Noir
Inexpensive Chianti
Loire Valley reds (Chinon, Bourgueil)
Medium-bodied, firm red wine to go with lamb, venison, simple roasts, or hard cheeses.
Less-expensive Bordeaux wines
Chianti Classico
Rioja
Cabernets or Syrahs from southern France
Less-expensive red Burgundies
Beaujolais crus
Medium-bodied, soft red wine to go with spicy meat dishes, grilled meats, roast chicken, game birds, turkey, lamb, venison, or salmon
Most U.S. Pinot Noirs
Inexpensive California Cabernets and Merlots
Inexpensive Zinfandels
Many Australian Shiraz wines
Australian Cabernets
Most Côtes du Rhône reds
Chilean Cabernets and Merlots
Full-bodied, intense red wine to go with rich meat dishes, venison, game birds, roast turkey, or spicy pastas
Better California Cabernets, Merlots, and Zinfandels
Better Bordeaux wines
Barolo, Barbaresco, and Brunello di Montalcino
Châteauneuf-du-Pape
Hermitage and Côte Rôtie
Better red Burgundy wines
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