We do a lot of outdoor entertaining this time of year. If you have a barbecue on your calendar, you might benefit from a few wine tips. Luckily, I have a few suggestions based on the summer heat and several grilled food favorites you might be serving.
Red, white and rosé wines are great through the summer — the star of summertime is Sauvignon Blanc, after all. For reds, go for something spicier. Zinfandels, not the white (pink) kind, go great with barbecue foods as do Petite Syrah and Carmenère. Try to avoid red wines that are overly oaked this time of year.
Benzinger Sauvignon Blanc
Benzinger Sauvignon Blanc, 2013 is available at your local Fine Wine and Good Spirits Store for $10.99. Wine Enthusiast has given this wine 87 points. It has aromas of floral and bright citrus, which make it fresh and crisp. This Old World style wine has notes of grapefruit and lime and enough body that gives you a richness on the finish. This is a great summer barbecue wine and a great price.
Sauvignon Blanc is a crisp and elegant wine to drink during summertime and would pair great with your next grilling of snapper, lobster, scallops or a spicy shrimp dish. It also goes great with a salad and asparagus.
Santa Julia Innovacion Rosé
Santa Julia Innovacion Rosé 2014 is available for $7.99. Santa Julia's Innocacion Rosé is made with 50 percent Malbec and 50 percent Syrah. This wine is a cherry pink color with aromatic notes of cherries, strawberries, and blackberries. It is fresh and fruity with flavors of apple, cherry, strawberry and a hint of watermelon. It has a delicate expressive fruitiness that will linger in your mouth. Pair this wine with rosemary chicken or pork sausages on the grill. It is also delicious served with Bleu or Gouda cheese and grilled vegetables with garlic and olive oil.
Petite Petit is made from 85 percent Petit Sirah and 15 percent Petit Verdot and costs $18.99. It is a very dark purple color. On the nose it has black fruit with concentrated blueberry, black cherries and toasted oak. This wine is fruit-driven rather than earthy. The flavor has such a large concentration of fruit it tastes almost chewable and has delicious touches of spice and wood with a delicate finish. Petite Petit is made by the Michael David Vineyards near Lodi, Calif. You can pair this wine with a nice filet mignon, pork tenderloin, eggplant parmigiana or blackened salmon. Root vegetables and aged sharp Cheddar, Gorgonzola or Swiss cheese will taste great with a Petite Sirah.
Rosenblum Cellars Zinfandel Harris Kratka
Rosenblum Cellars Zinfandel Harris Kratka 2010 is available for $19.99. Wine Spectator gives this wine 83 points. It is a cherry powered wine that has tastes of blueberry, dried plum, crème brule, licorice and black pepper — a jammy with a nice finish. This wine would go great with brisket or spare ribs on the grill. I enjoy Parmesan or Asiago cheese with this wine.