Your playlist is set, charcuterie is laid out and almost too pretty to eat, dinner is on schedule and you are feeling perfectly chilled… until you realize your wine isn’t. What is the best way to chill those bottles before your guests arrive? You can find lots of ‘tricks’ online – wrap it in a wet towel and freeze it! Add frozen grapes to the glass! Wait, are there people out there that actually have frozen grapes on hand?! Take a deeeeep breath...
Let’s think... who cares about wine temperature as much (maybe more?) as you & I do? Sommeliers and servers!
I don’t know about you, but the last time I brought a bottle of unchilled wine to a restaurant, the staff calmly and confidently put it in a bucket with ice and water and shortly thereafter, I was enjoying perfectly chilled wine. The only ‘trick’ to this is the correct water to ice ratio.
But before we go into that, let’s talk about what makes this method so effective - water is a better thermal conductor than air at about 25 times the rate, (it’s science, people!), so submerging the bottle(s) in a refreshing ice bath will bring it to temperature in 15 minutes or so, about half the time the airtight freezer will take. This method also eliminates the risk of forgetting about that bottle of bubbly in the freezer (kaboom!).
Back to the tricky part – first, fill the bucket (a large pot or bowl will do) about 2/3 full of ice then add water, leaving a little room at the top so you don’t have any spillage once you add the bottle. Be sure to submerge the whole bottle, otherwise the first glass poured will be warm. If you are worried about water-logged labels, wrap the bottle in plastic wrap before submerging in ice. Start the music, give yourself one more pat on the back for that beautiful charcuterie board and voila, 15 minutes later you and your guests are enjoying perfectly chilled wine! Life is good.
Penny, a SAVVY Staffer
P.S. Thirsty for more? We're launching our SAVVY Tasting Club on August 14th!Monthly, guided tastings via Facebook Live where a certified sommelier offers educated guidance about wines, their regions and the primary aromas and tasting profiles in a fun, interactive group setting. As a SAVVY Insider, you can join our first live tasting FREE on our SAVVY Wine Shopper Facebook Page, August 14th at 6pm MST.