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We need to have a chat about red blends. In the past few years, more and more people have started to use the term "red blend" when asked about their preferences in wine, the same way one would use Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Sangiovese or Syrah. While it's great that one can point out the preferred style of wine, there is one issue, what does red blend even mean?
The thing is, a red blend isn't a single style of wine. In fact, it doesn't mean anything in particular at all. The wine doesn't specify any grapes used in the blend. In fact, any permutation of red grapes will fit the definition.
While the term "red blend" isn't uncommon in the US and Canada, it only really took off in 2015, when the sales of all red blends were 13% of all wine sales. That's almost as high as the all time bestseller in the red wine category, Cabernet Sauvignon.
The most popular red blends tend to be round, rich, juicy, and full-bodied, all at an affordable price. That's the flavour profile that red blend lovers now expect from their wine. The most popular grapes used in the blend are Zinfandel, Merlot and Shiraz.
While some believe that red blend isn't a reliable indicator of a specific style of wine, it definitely shouldn't be tossed aside. Instead, more attention should be paid to the red blend category. After all, a lot of the world famous wines are red blends. An excellent example of that is Bordeaux.
Depending on the grapes and flavour profile of the wine, you can either enjoy it with your meal or by itself. If you want to experiment with wine more, make sure to find out what grapes your favourite wine have and where they come from, then look for a blend with similar qualities. How about a glass tonight?
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