Alton Brown Nobly Defends His Wine Faux Pas

The world of wine is a tricky one and comes with a strict set of unspoken rules. First, there's the entire deal about pairing the right kind of wine with food. Then, a string of regulations follows: to decant or not to decant, selecting the right glass, and precise instructions about the temperature at which wine should be served. While you could rebel against these stipulations, dissenting from the general wine etiquette invites the scrutiny of wine snobs around the globe. Alton Brown, it seems, is the most recent television personality to have faced their judgment.

Over the pandemic-induced months of lockdown, Brown and his wife Elizabeth Ingram started a YouTube series called Quarantine Quitchen where fans could watch them causally cook meals at home while sipping on drinks and playing with their dogs. In one particular video, the duo whips up a tomato tart, and Ingram drinks from a white wine-filled mason jar with ice cubes blatantly swishing around.

Although Brown prefers proper stemware, he too admits to liking his red wine with a cube of ice in it because he likes his wine "just a little bit cooler than room temp." While some sommeliers and fellow wine drinkers may find diluting wine with ice blasphemous, Brown has come out in defense of the apparent wine faux pas (via Twitter).

Brown takes a sly dig at restaurants with his ice cube trick

Replying to a tweet from a fan about his ice cube faux pas, Brown nobly came out in defense of adding ice cubes to red wine — but in doing so, he may or may not have taken a sly dig at restaurants: "Well, if restaurants didn't keep their red wine above room temp I wouldn't have to float a cube in there for 10 seconds. #geeze," he said.

It turns out that fans are generally in agreement with Brown. "Agreed for sure on that point! #restaurants often don't store their #wine correctly," agreed one fan. Another pointed out that in the best-case scenario, white wine should be taken out of the refrigerator 15 minutes before drinking, and red wine should be placed into the refrigerator for 15 minutes before serving. Restaurants, they said, simply don't have that much time as diners don't want to wait that long for their wine.

In that case, it seems like Brown's ice cube-in-red wine trick may not be a faux pas after all. In fact, Giada De Laurentiis and Taylor Swift have both admitted to adding ice to white wine, and even Martha Stewart unabashedly drinks her rosé with ice. As for those who still can't get behind adding ice to wine but do find Brown's trick ingenious, why not make ice cubs out of wine instead? You'll have instantly chilled wine without diluting it with water — it's a win-win!