Pacific Rim
February 9, 2023 | wine | Pacific Rim

Does Red Wine Warm You Up?

There is no doubt that a cup of hot coffee or chocolate induces a warm sensation in the body, and that is why people prefer to drink these on a cold winter morning. But that is obvious, those are warm beverages. But what about wine? Does red wine warm you up? The simple answer is yes; some wines can induce a warm feeling. This warmth is most noticeable in colder weather. Some people may just feel a transient hot flush that lasts a few seconds, and others may feel a very intense warm sensation that may last longer. In most people, the warm sensation induced by wine is fleeting and causes no ill effects. But why does it happen?

red wine by a warm fire


The intensity of the hot flush with wine depends on the wine and the alcohol content since the reason wines induce a warm feeling is related to the alcohol content. The higher the alcohol content, the more intense the flushing sensation can be.  Does red wine warm you up? Histamines and tannins that can be found in red wines can cause a warming sensation in your body.  The alcoholic content in red wine can dilate blood vessels and increase blood flow, thereby lending to a warming feeling. The wine redistributes blood closer to the surface of the skin thereby allowing you to feel heated.  Not many things can feel as comforting as red wine on a snowy winter day, where you are, preferably, inside drinking it and looking out a window.


Aside from healthy people developing a warm sensation to wine, other reasons why some people may develop a flushed sensation include the following:

Some people may lack an enzyme that breaks down alcohol, and these individuals tend to develop an intense flush that may be recurrent and last 30-60 seconds.

In addition, individuals with high blood pressure are also at an increased risk for developing alcoholic flushes.

Recent studies show that wine flush tends to be more common in people who are dehydrated. Hence, people who exercise or perform physical activity and do not drink adequate water can develop an alcoholic flush after drinking wine.

Does red wine warm you up? The amount of wine you have to drink to derive the warming sensation varies from person to person. Some people drink a few sips of wine and immediately develop a warm feeling, whereas others may have to drink more wine to develop the same sensation.

How many people develop a warm sensation after drinking alcohol is not exactly known, but estimates indicate that it may range from 1-3 percent of wine drinkers. Does wine warm you up?  While it is impossible to tell ahead of time who will develop the warm sensation after drinking wine, the best advice is to select wines that are low in alcohol content, keep well hydrated, drink alcohol slowly, and eat some food at the same time.

Looking for a New Winter Wine?

Try some of these wines if you are looking for something new to try this winter, or something familiar and comforting.


Commenting has been turned off.


Recent Posts