Because it’s a thin-skinned grape the wine’s not too dark, heavy, bitter or tannic – a perfect transitional red! If you’re not familiar with tannin, many people who don’t like red wine eventually discover that they don’t like tannin. It’s the thing that dries out your mouth and makes your teeth feel furry.
Red Zinfandel is great choice because it isn’t tannic by nature and has tons of fruit! Look for one that isn’t too high in alcohol and it won’t seem too heavy.
Moving to France, look for wines called Beaujolais and Beaujolais Nouveau. These are easy drinking reds and they aren’t too expensive either! Beaujolais wines are made of the Gamay grape, so if you see the occasional new-world Gamay or Gamay Nouveau, you’ll know you have the new-world version.
From Italy, Valpolicella, Dolcetto and Bardolino are light-bodied reds that go down easy. The only thing is if you’re not accustomed to wines that are somewhat tart these wines might make you pucker. They’ll go down best with food.
These days it’s so easy to try new things with wine bars opening up by the day, the by-the-glass programs at so many restaurants and the increasing number of wine shops with tasting bars. Have fun with it! And, before you know it, you’ll have a growing list of red favorites!
I hope that helps! Please let me know how it goes!