September 07, 2021 by Arden Montgomery
Best Wine for Autumn
Summer is winding down. The hot-weather party animals are packing up their barbecues, pulling back from the beaches, and getting ready to go back indoors. The party still rages on — just in a much cozier way.
Many of our recent posts have been chock-full of wines we describe as “summer in a bottle,” or “drinkable sunshine,” or “like drinking from the fountains of youth.” And believe us, we’re definitely going to stash a few of these away for an especially rainy day when the weather starts to turn frightful. But as the leaves start to turn, so does the vibe, and Autumn calls for something a little darker, and a little deeper.
Whether you’re cozying up by the fire, buckling up for a super-productive fall season, or gleefully prepping for the upcoming Autumnal holidays, there is a wine to get you through. Here is our guide to finding the perfect wines for the fall season.
What to Look For in an Autumn Wine
Your first instinct is probably to reach for the darkest bottle of red you can possibly procure. And you’re right: red wine is ideal for fall for a number of reasons. Usually served at room temperature, red wines won’t cool you down in chilly Autumn temperatures. And tasting notes in red wines better reflect the seasonality than white wines typically can: reds are full of dark fruits, baking spices, woodsmoke, and cozy, nostalgic flavors like leather and tobacco. Red wine is mood music for fall’s moody playlist.
That being said: you are by no means required to drink only red wine during the upcoming season. There are of course plenty of white and Rosé wines with the right tasting notes and overall feeling that will set you up for carving pumpkins, baking apple pie, and doing back-to-school shopping.
If you’re looking for a fall-ready white, keep your eyes peeled for wines on the chewier, more buttery side. Wines emphasizing spice and oak over juicy fruits will make a great companion in the darkening days.
If you’re a fan of Rosé, the same rules apply. Dry varieties like Grenache or Cinsault-derived bottles offer a spicy boldness that is much more fall-friendly than their sweeter cousins (white Zin, for example.)
As usual, the bottom line is this: drink what you like! If thinking too hard about pairing wine with the weather is getting you down, close your phone and go buy a bottle of the wine with the prettiest label. But if you want to learn more, stick around for some of our favorite fall wines.
Best Red Wine for Autumn
- 2019 Notary Public ‘Curtis Vineyard’ Carbonic Cabernet Franc – $26
Drinkable at any point during the fall OR summer, we recommend this delicious Cabernet Franc as a transition wine while you’re still eeking out the ever-shrinking daylight hours for a few more last-minute barbecues. Chillable, fruity at first sip with a spicy and herbaceous finish, this wine is perfect for welcoming in the Autumn months.
- 2018 Finca Torremilanos ‘Los Cantos’ Tempranillo – $22
A quintessential Spanish wine for a quintessential Autumn experience. This Tempranillo from woman-owned winery Finca Torremilanos is aged in oak barrels for sixteen months, imbuing it with a distinct and lively palate rich with red berries, tobacco and chocolate. Grab a quilt and a glass of this wine, and get ready to love Fall 2021.
- 2018 Damilano Barbera d’Asti DOCG – $22
Anyone who does anything in the kitchen this Thanksgiving gets a glass or two of this classic Barbera. We wouldn’t call you out for splashing a generous pour of this wine into whatever it is you’re cooking, either. Lavender, nutmeg and red fruit in the nose and vanilla, cherries, and currants make it feel like a fall-themed dessert all its own.
Best White Wine for Autumn
- 2017 Silkman Hunter Valley Semillon – $22
A deceptively summery wine, this Semillon should be a staple at every dinner table in the coming months. Citrus, honey and stone fruit make this dry and delicious white a credit to its varietal. Its archetypal beeswax notes do the work of evoking the fall feeling — candles burning in windows, on tables, and in Jack-O-Lanterns.
- 2019 Maison d’Amis Clarksburg Chenin Blanc – $23
Dry, light, and low in alcohol, this is the wine you keep around for long, long nights by the fire, or a quick lunch between classes. Bruised and overripe fruits wrapped in buttery pastry on the tongue conjure images of past-season orchards getting ready to shed their leaves and begin the growth cycle once again.
- 2018 Scar of the Sea Sauvignon Blanc Cofermented Cider – $18 (half-bottle)
It just wouldn’t be fall without apple cider. This exquisite marriage of grape and apple wine is made by fermenting apple juice, aging the product, and then re-fermenting it after introducing Sauvignon Blanc grapes and lime leaves for some added oomph. An utterly unique and absolutely delicious Autumn staple.
Best Rosé Wine for Fall
- 2019 Storm Santa Barbara County Grenache Rosé – $25
As savory a Rosé as Rosés get. Summer fruits and flowers draw you in by your olfactory senses and light red fruits keep you there long after with a delicious minerality. Rosés give off a youthful vibe (probably because they’re pink) but this one, deep and balanced and made from grapes grown on older vines, promises an Autumnal sophistication.
How Argaux can Help with Fall Wines
If you’re looking for a way to have fun during the fall season AND learn more about wine, look no further. Argaux offers a special blind-tasting kit for budding wine enthusiasts that’s perfect as an Autumn pastime. Our kit includes 2-4 hand-picked, hand-wrapped bottles from our collection as well as a comprehensive guide to the world of wine tasting. Order now and show off your wine-identification skills by the time winter rolls around.
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