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November 25, 2021 | wine | Pacific Rim

What Does Red Blend Wine Mean?

Winemaking is many centuries old and evaluation of grape residue from ancient pottery has revealed that in the past several types of grapes were used to make this social drink. Fast forward to the 21st Century and now the term “red blend” is frequently used to label wine and its popularity is increasing at a rapid pace. But what does red blend wine mean?

What does red blend wine mean

What is a red blend wine? In the simplest terms, any red wine that is manufactured from more than one variety of red grapes is known as a red blend. This practice started when winegrowers had different types of grapes that were leftover and, rather than discard them, they simply mixed them to produce a wine, which we now refer to as “red blend.” 

Some people tend to feel that red blends are low-quality wines or inexpensive table wines because they are made from poor-quality “leftover” grapes.  That is not the case at all.  Many of your favorite wines may be a red blend wine unbeknownst to you.

It should be noted that some red blends also have their own specific requirements, even though they are composed of several varieties of grapes. For example, in many wine-growing regions of Europe, the practice of combining grapes is very common. The Bordeaux blend comprises a mixture of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc. 

Today, many red wine blends are of extremely good quality, offering delicious and unique flavors as a result of the perfect matching of the different varieties of grapes.  It is an art to match the grapes correctly.

What does red blend wine mean? In most winemaking regions, laws mandate that the wine be made from a specified variety of grapes and thus the label will say BLEND. If the winemaking process is not blended according to these specifications, it is called a generic wine or a table wine.

Where Do Red Blends Come From?

What is a red blend wine? Red blends have traditionally been made in the Old World (France, Spain, Italy, Germany, etc.), but today they are also made in the New World (South Africa, Chile, Argentina, New Zealand, etc.). In North America, there is a huge production of slightly sweeter red wine blends made in California and Washington State. Some of the most popular sweet red wines fall into this group.

What Foods Pair Best with Red Wine Blends?

In general, the heavier red blend wines tend to be acidic and have higher alcohol content, and are best paired with meat dishes like lamb, sausage, venison, duck, and chicken. The more moderate or lighter red blends are best paired with foods like pasta, fish, bacon, mild Indian, Mexican, Thai dishes, etc. 

Foods that should be avoided with red blends include seafood and salads.


What does red blend wine mean? What is a red blend wine? Red wine blends are very popular in the U.S. primarily because they are of low acidity, tend to be sweeter, have fruity flavors, are affordable, and are easy to drink. Best of all, if you have any red blend wine leftover, you can use it for cooking.  Call Pacific Rim & Company to get all your wine questions answered.  They have a staff who is passionate about wine; call them today at 1-503-863-5454.


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