When it comes to pairing drinks with holidays, wine and Valentine’s Day just go together. It’s as easy to put the two in the same sentence as saying Irish whiskey and St. Patrick’s Day (or green beer, if you’re into that). We’re not talking just any wine, though, but red wine. The deep color, the strong flavors—there’s just something about the category that just feels right when it comes to Valentine’s Day.
As with Valentine’s Day dates, though, there are different kinds of red wines. Are you looking for something that’ll suit a casual date? What about a long romantic evening with your significant other? Oh, you’re just skipping the meal and going right to a night of passion? Great!
To get the right wines for any of those occasions, we sat down with Vivino Brand Ambassador Joel Caruso to get his picks for the best red wines for Valentine’s Day.
Vivino, for those that have not heard of it, is the world’s largest online wine marketplace. The key to the site’s success is the crowd-sourced ratings that help the 27 million users zero in on what their next bottle of vino should be. Each day, users scan and rate roughly 500,000 wines. Vivino then uses these ratings and your own purchase history to better recommend wines that you will enjoy.
“With 9 million wines in the Vivino database, picking the right one for Valentine’s Day can be a bit overwhelming. But fear not, we are here to help as wine lovers everywhere prepare,” Caruso says.
And with that, onto the wines with descriptions straight from Caruso himself:
Jean Foillard Morgon ‘Cuvée Corcelette Beaujolais – $39
“There is nothing sexier than Cru Beaujolais. Be it Valentine’s or not, this should be opened every time a Drake song comes on. Balanced between bright cranberry and leather bound spices, [this wine] gives you a little tug in the mouth.”
Gramercy Cellars Columbia Valley Cabernet – $47
“While cruising out of your comfort zone can be a difficult, it can feel just right with the proper wine. Here Gramercy Cellars shows what the Cabernet Sauvignon grape is really capable of up north. Brooding red fruits, juicy bell pepper, and smashed green coffee beans, rounding back to a sweet, gentle embrace of soft, lacy tannin.”
Marchesi Antinori Badia a Passignano Gran Selezione Chianti Classico – $58
“Italians know romance and this is a perfect example of just how sexy Italian wines can be. This sensual Sangiovese has rich earth tones that emanate under black cherry and faded leather. The tobacco on the finish leaves you constantly wanting another sip.”
Booker Oublie Rhone blend of Grenache and Mourvedre – $60
“Big, ripe, earth covered fruits jump out and evolve in the glass as the night progresses. This is a wine you can take your time with as you get to know someone. Take care with this wine, and the person you drink it with.”
Vina Cobos Bramare Marchiori Argentine Malbec by Paul Hobbs – $89
“Malbec always makes an impression on the senses. This wine’s sexy purple hue and the entanglement of fresh raspberries, vanilla and dill will draw out a wideness in your eyes that expands the finish of the wine. Like a bit of rough play in a soft way, this massive wine shows a level of love and care that leaves you feeling loved and cared for, if not slightly worn out.”