17 Best Sweet Red Wine | All About Sweet Red Wines

sweet red wine

When thinking of sweet wines, people generally think of sweet white wines. But a sweet red wine can be just as sweet and might even match your palate better!

And some sweet red wines use popular dry red wine grapes like Sangiovese or even make them in the same regions of popular dry reds (Valpolicella).

Table of Contents

Red Wine Sweetness Chart

red wine sweetness chart

What are the Best Sweet Red Wines?

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This slightly effervescent Italian wine has aromas of sweet cherry sauce and ripe plum flavors which are complemented by spiced herbs, orange peel, and hints of coffee. 

And this wine will make you feel as if summer time is just around every corner. Serve with fruit salad, ice cream, or on its own as a refreshing drink relaxing with friends. 

Tasting Notes: Strawberry, fruit punch, raspberry, maraschino cherry, plum

Ricco Dolce is the perfect sweet red blend for when you want something on the sweeter side. With fruity flavors that are full of delight, yet soft and delicate – it’s hard not to enjoy Ricco Dolce.

And with its name meaning “rich” and “sweet,” Ricco Dolce is a fruit-forward wine with notes of fresh red berry flavor with bright acidity that will leave you wanting more!

Tasting Notes: Strawberry, raspberry, orange, cherry

braida sweet red wine

Sweet, smooth, and delicate wine made of 100% Brachetto d’Acqui. It’s aromatic and meant as a wine with your desserts and pastries after a meal. Besides that, it’s the best wine to match with chocolates! Best to drunk young.

Tasting Notes: Red fruits, strawberries

sweet red wine

Rich and opulent, a delicious dessert still wine from Chianti Classico appellation in Tuscany, Italy. It’s moderately sweet with a hint of burned sugar on the finish. Fantastic wine! The color of the wine is so brownish red, that we listed it under a red wine.

Tasting Notes: candied walnut, honey, molasses

sweet red wine

This sparkling wine has very fruity aromas and fragrances. It’s lively bubbles along with a smooth palate makes this surprisingly pleasant to drink. And it’s just a captivating fruity wine!

Tasting Notes: Black cherry, raspberry, strawberry, black currant, balsamic

The intense, deep-colored Fonseca Bin No. 27 was blended from reserve wines selected for their rich texture and spent four years in large wood vats before bottling!

This port wine is made for people who enjoy a full-bodied palate with dark ruby color and smooth, dense flavors.

Tasting Notes: Chocolate, vanilla, oak, plum, blackberry, raisin, black cherry

Balanced, fresh, with a complex taste, excellent structure, and light sweetness – a superb baby Noval wine with a mouthwatering edge. It’s great on its own at the end of meals or paired with desserts, especially dark chocolate! Perfect for the sweet tooth!

Tasting Notes: Blackberry, black currant, fig, oak, chocolate, vanilla, raspberry

sweet red wine

Another sweet Italian red wine. But this time, it’s from Veneto, particularly in Valpolicella, which literally means “valley of cellars.” It’s a rich and warming blend of three indigenous Venetian varietals – Corvina, Rondinella, and Corvinone.

Tasting Notes: plum, chocolate, raisin

Fruit-driven sparkling red wine that’s sweet, but not overly so. In addition, it has nice acidity, and the fizz never gets overwhelming. After the first taste, you’re going to drink it again. Overall, it’s one of the best Lambrusco wines so far.

Tasting Notes: strawberry, cherry

sweet wines

One of the 1st historic Port wine house, Taylor’s has been in operation since 1692. Late Bottled Vintage red wines means its bottled in wood between four and six years.

This rich wine is elegant and stylish with  blackcurrant and cherry aromas and spice. On the palate there is concentrated black fruit flavors supported by  heavy tannins.

Tasting Notes: Dark chocolate, dark cherries, plum, blackberries, prune, raisin, oak

The 2017 Quady Elysium Black Muscat offers a bouquet of roses with dark fruit – cherry, strawberry. The wine finishes clean and tart on your palate due to its acidity which refreshes you after each sip! Perfect pairing is to pour this wine onto your ice cream!

Tasting Notes: Cherry, strawberry jam, blackberry, raisin, chocolate, caramel

Blandy's 5 year old sercial madeira

Best served chilled, this dry Madeira has soft fruit flavors with a hint of nuttiness and a clean, crisp finish.

Tasting Notes: Caramel, coffee, toffee, nutty, brown sugar, honey , smoke

5 Sweet Red Wines at Total Wine

sweet wines

Fun and sweeter wine than your typical Shiraz. It’s fruity, fresh, and semi-sweet – the perfect balance of acidity and sweetness to make it approachable. Jam Jar is definitely the most popular sweet Shiraz and one the most affordable best sweet red wines.  

sweet red wines

A blend of three native grape varietals in the Lombardy region of Italy – Croatina, Lagrein, and Teroldego. But the best thing about it? It has a delicate sweetness with an irresistibly gentle fizz. Very fruity wine with cherry, raspberry, strawberry, blackberry, and chocolate notes. 

sweet red wines

Semi-sparkling, semi-sweet red wine that can set anybody’s inner femme fatale free. But it’s not just sweet. There’s also a nice and smooth flavor in there, making it a delicious wine overall. Sweet strawberry and raspberry jam flavors. 

16) ReLusso Rosso Frizzante

sweet red wines

A fizzy semi-sweet red wine packed with fresh berry flavors, a rare blend for easy drinking and all sweet wine lovers.

sweet wines

Delightful and fruity with intense black fruit flavors and a hint of sweetness that will keep you reaching for more. 

What Is Sweet Red Wine?

During grape juice fermentation, grape sugar turns into alcohol. By stopping the fermentation earlier, all grape sugar doesn’t get converted into alcohol. In short, there’s a touch of sugar left behind in the final wine.

Sweet red wines can be either still, sparkling, or fortified.

What are the Different Types of Sweet Red Wines?

sweet red wine

1) Lambrusco

Lambrusco is a type of red wine that originates from Italy. It is made from the Lambrusco grape, which is a variety of red grape. Lambrusco wines are usually sparkling and semi-sweet.

It’s similar to a light and sparkling grape juice. Although it’s not as sweet as pure grape juice, it’s incredibly fruit-forward and sweeter than more tannic wines. Look for wines labeled “Amabile” for a ‘just sweet’ style or “Dolce” for the sweetest reds.

2) Brachetto

Brachetto, the grape, makes a light ruby red sweet red wine called Brachetto d’Acqui, which comes in three types. First, the Rosso with a sweetness range of 4-5 teaspoons of sugar per glass. Second, the Spumante, which is the full sparkling version. Then there’s the Passito, the sweeter and richer wine made from pick and hand-dried grapes.

3) Vin Santo Occhio di Pernice

It is made from the Sangiovese and Malvasia Nera half-dry grapes, and it is aged for at least three years in wooden casks. Fascinating sweet wine from Tuscany, a product of passito drying method and very slow fermentation of half-dry grapes.

This wine has a deep amber color and a sweet, raisin flavor. It pairs well with biscotti or other dried fruits.

4) Ports

Port is a sweet fortified wine that originated in Portugal. It is made by adding brandy to a wine while it is still fermenting. This stops the fermentation process, leaving behind residual sugar.

Port can range in sweetness, from dry to very sweet.

  • Ruby port is a type of port that is aged for three years in wooden barrels. It has a fruity flavor and is less sweet than other ports.
  • Tawny Port is very sweet, while Ruby Port has young, fruity characters, high in tannins, but is still sweet.
  • Lastly, there’s Vintage Port, the opposite of Tawny, but still sweet.

Learn more about Ports, and check out our Top 5 Ports Under $30!

5) Dornfelder

Dornfelder is one of Germany’s most well-known cultivated grapes, and it was created in Württemberg in the mid-1950s. Dornfelder is extremely versatile German dessert wine. It is made from the Dornfelder grape, which is a variety of red grape. This wine is sweet and fruity, with flavors of blackberry and cherry. It pairs well with chocolate or other sweets.

6) Schiava

Light-bodied fruity red wine from Italy (Trollinger in Germany and Black Hamburg or Vernatsch in England) – tastes like cotton candy! It’s dry style so as to not overwhelm your palate with all its sweetness.


The taste of Schiava is a light-bodied red wine with aromas that are reminiscent to strawberry, bubblegum, and fruit candy.

7) Recioto Della Valpolicella

Recioto Della Valpolicella is an intensely flavored, sweet red wine made from dried (passito) grapes in the Veneto region of north-eastern Italy.

Recioto” is a very sweet passito wine with velvety chocolate flavors made from Corvina grapes.

While the wine is similar to Amarone della Valpolicella DOCG, it has a sweetness that sets it apart from other wines because it has residual sugar. 

What is Fortified Wine?

Fortified wine is a type of wine that has had brandy or another distilled alcohol added to it. This process stops the fermentation process, which leaves behind residual sugar. Fortified wines can be dry or sweet, depending on how much residual sugar is left behind.

There are three main types of fortified wines: Port, Sherry, and Madeira.

Port and some Madeira are the two fortified sweet red wines. 

Sherry is a fortified wine that originates from Spain. It is made from white grapes that are grown near the town of Jerez de la Frontera. Sherry can be dry, semi-dry, or sweet. The sweeter varieties are made by adding Pedro Ximenez grapes to the wine.

Madeira is a fortified wine that originates from the Portuguese island of Madeira. It is made from red or white grapes that are grown on the island. Madeira is a very sweet wine, and it can be served as a dessert wine.

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