Cheap to Chic: How to make bargain wines taste more expensive

PHOENIX - One thing that never seems to go out of style is a nice glass of wine and though there are wineries in every state, the U.S. is only the fourth largest wine producer in the world.  We fall behind France, Italy and Spain.  Wherever it's from a bottle can cost anywhere from a few dollars to several thousand.

Pouring the perfect glass of wine doesn't have to start with an expensive bottle.  Christine Ansbacher is a certified wine educator and the author of "Secrets from the Wine Diva."  She says all you have to remember is "TAG."

"Temperature, aeration, and glassware," she said.
 
Let's start with temperature.  Ansbacher says take white wine out of the fridge 30 minutes before serving it.  
 
"The flavors are numb.  They're asleep ,so you need to bring the wine out of the fridge and let it actually warm up," Ansbacher said. 
 
You can add flavor to a red wine by cooling it off.
 
"Take an ice cube.  Drop the ice cube in.  Swirl it around.  Count to 10.  Take the ice cube out.  That's all you need to do," Ansbacher said.
 
"A" stands for aeration to let the wine breathe.
 
"For $10, you buy an aerator and all those bubbles mean more flavor," Ansbacher said.
 
When it comes to the "G" for glassware, choose crystal, which is more expensive but rougher than glass.
 
"When you swirl this red wine in a glass, she's going to feel like a loofa treatment, and those bubbles are bursting open are esters, which are nothing more than aromas," she said.
 
Wine experts like David Johnson, who has 20 years experience as a Sommelier, agree.
 
"What your nose smells in the wine is what you taste in the wine," Johnson said.
 
Generally, letting the wine sit out for a little before you serve it is a great way to bring out some of those flavors, but experts say the best way is to pair it with right food.
 
"A nice salty cold cut or some nice cheese, it's going to make that wine test better," Johnson said.
 
And with more than 20 years of wine experience, Johnson says don't be afraid to ask for help.  The flavor combinations are infinite. 
 
"If you go to the specialty shops, they will help you make good decisions," Johnson said.
 
But once you get that bargain wine home, there's no need to age it.
 
"In fact, you're doing more damage because the more years you put it away in an old cupboard, the more it's not going to be good," Johnson said.
 
So, drink up and enjoy!

Copyright 2013 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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