When you think of the perfect beverage to complement your summer, what do you think of? Lemonade? Iced tea? Beer? If it’s not wine, why not? Probably because you just haven’t come across the perfect summer wine yet?
It’s out there, you know, the perfect wine for your summer. It’s just a question of finding it. Here are a few suggestions to get you started.
Let’s start out by dismissing the myth that you only really want to drink white wines during the summer. There are many delicious reds that can help make for a beautiful summer’s afternoon, especially pinot noir. This varietal can be one of the most special wines you can find, with some truly great flavors.
Pinot noir is a great choice for a picnic wine. Whether it’s just an intimate outing for the two of you or a bigger family affair, pinot noir is an excellent choice to put in your basket.
Block 816 2014 is a pinot noir from the Willamette Valley in Washington. It’s fairly dry and has a pleasant, complex flavor that includes hints of herbs, fruit, and oak.
Etude Carneros 2013 The Carneros region is located at the crossroads between the Napa and Sonoma Valleys, and its unique geography leads to some truly outstanding wines, and this example from the Etude winery is no exception. Faint herbs along with black tea and cranberry flavors stand out here.
Sea Mist 2014 This Sonoma County pinot noir comes from grapes grown in the Russian River Valley. The cool, foggy climate in the valley has been described by some as the best country in California for growing the fickle pinot noir grape. This makes Sea Mist a really special example of the varietal.
Is there any occasion when a chardonnay is a bad choice? Sure, there may be times when there’s a more inspired wine choice, but for almost any occasion, a chardonnay is an excellent choice.
Block 808 2014 Although the fruity flavors of this wine may make you think of autumn—pears, apples, and some citrus—this Monterey wine is great for many occasions, such as light picnics of cheese and fish, even a mussel dig.
Sauvignon blanc began as a wild grape in France, and even to this day the white retains some of that wild spirit. It’s often full of earthy, herbal flavors that goes surprisingly well with light barbecue sides like pasta salad or potato salad, or with lightly roasted vegetables from the grill.
Nobilo 2014 This New Zealand example really shows off the earthy, complex character of the varietal. In addition to the herbal and mineral character, this wine has some surprising notes, including some citrus and even jalapeño. This makes it a great choice when you’re having Mexican rather than the standard American barbecue.
Matua 2016 Another New Zealand example, Matua leans heavily on the citrus flavors, along with several other hints of various summer fruits.
Before the invention of sugary sodas, people came to enjoy the taste and tang of sparkling wines. “Brut” describes a sparkling wine that is very dry, a refreshing contrast to the sweet drinks in a can.
Domaine Carneros 2012 Another enjoyable wine sourced from the Carneros region, the Domaine label offers a special flavor. The vintners trace their lineage back to the French wine family Taittinger. They pride themselves on combining the traditional methods of making sparkling wines with the new world flavors of Carneros grapes.
Dopff & Irion Rose This French wine from the Alsace region is a blend that achieves a remarkably consistent quality. It’s a pleasant pink color and has a crisp refreshing flavor, making it an ideal introduction to your next backyard function, although it can be easily enjoyed throughout the meal.
Soave is a dry Italian white wine. This wine produced in northern Italy was very popular in the mid-20th century, although it has been less appreciated recently, with many people turning to southern Italian wines.
Pieropan Classico 2014 This blend earns the “classic” designation because it is sourced from the hillsides around Verona. The blending of 85% Garganega and 15% Trebbiano di Soave gives it a rich bouquet, fresh flavor, and balanced, lingering feel.
Riesling is a German white wine grape, but it’s spread around the world, with a considerable amount being grown in the US. Typically used in varietal pure wines, they can range from dry to sweet, but they are typically light and refreshing.
Kung Fu Girl 2014 This Washington Riesling is an affordable and tasty example of the style. It tends toward the sweet side, with aromas of peach and lime leaves. It has a nice mineral character and a lingering finish.
For those who think of wines as their go-to summer beverage, a rose is probably their style of choice. There was a time when the accessible flavor of rose wines made them seem unfashionable, but today people have really come to appreciate the wonderful flavor that can accompany the appealing color. If anything, it’s become the chic style of the day, with its own hashtag (#roséallday) to demonstrate its currency not just as a drink but as a lifestyle.
Bieler Pere et Fils 2015 This rose from Provence is considered by many to be the height of the style, with a great balance of sweet fruit and acid tang.
Miraval Cotes de Provence 2016 Another Old World wine that has mastered the elegant balance of sweet fruit and tangy acidity, this example has a nice fruity finish with significant mineral hints.
Find Your New Favorite Wine
During summer the good weather and clear roads invites the soul to travel. You may not always be able to hit the road, but you can bring the world to your palate by exploring new varieties of wine.
To make this soul journey more affordable, Applejack Wine & Spirits has all these and many other wines on sale. We invite you to visit us today to start your trip.