Finding the Right Red Wine - dummies

By Ed McCarthy, Mary Ewing-Mulligan, Maryann Egan

Part of Wine All-In-One For Dummies Cheat Sheet

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
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
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
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
Hermitage and Côte Rôtie
Better red Burgundy wines