There’s nothing quite like the bright, sunny days and warm, calm evenings of summer. Everything seems just a bit more relaxed, and there’s finally time to enjoy those special moments with family and friends. Check out these six wine pairings to share at your seasonal gatherings – they’re certain to impress!
Chablis – Raw Oysters
Closer in proximity to France’s Champagne region than the rest of Burgundy, cool-climate Chablis is an excellent source for brilliant, mineral-driven expressions of Chardonnay. These wines typically offer flavors of apple, pear, and citrus fruits, along with scents of white flowers and wet stone. Their clean and lively mouthfeel makes for an ideal choice to drink with fresh raw oysters garnished with lemon juice. It really doesn’t get more refreshing than this!
Rías Baixas Albariño – Grilled Sea Bass
Located on the northwest coast of Spain, Rías Baixas is known for juicy white wines made from the Albariño grape. Albariño’s stone fruit aromas of peach and apricot are intense and translate beautifully onto the palate. Their bright acidity and minerality are particularly suited to fleshier fish dishes, such as grilled sea bass topped with tropical fruit salsa.
Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc – Oven-Roasted Asparagus
The Marlborough region of New Zealand is where you will find Sauvignon Blanc’s New World home. Textbook examples of this wine display pronounced flavors of grapefruit, gooseberry, tropical fruits, and herbs, while mouthwatering acidity cleanses the palate. Asparagus is one of the most difficult vegetables to pair with wine, but with a Sauvignon Blanc like this, you will have no trouble at all. Add some fresh goat cheese for a little extra tanginess.
Sancerre Rosé – Slow-Cooked Pulled Pork
You may be familiar with the white wines of Sancerre, but did you know that rosés are produced there, too? Made from Pinot Noir grapes, these wines are popular in France during the summer months. Lovely flavors of red berries, citrus, flowers, and minerals are especially refreshing in combination with their elegant and vibrant texture. Try one with some melt-in-your-mouth pulled pork for a real treat!
Cru Beaujolais – BBQ Chicken
The French region of Beaujolais can be found in the southernmost portion of Burgundy, and it’s here that the Gamay grape reigns supreme. The best Beaujolais wines come from one of the ten distinct “crus,” or villages. Their common flavors include cranberry, tart cherry, red flowers, spice, and earthiness. On the palate, they are usually medium-bodied, juicy, and finessed – similar to Pinot Noir. You can’t go wrong with a fresh Beaujolais matched with succulent chicken barbecued to perfection.
Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon – Ribeye Steaks
Located in Sonoma County, California, Alexander Valley is warm enough to grow full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon wines that tend to be softer and more accessible in their youth than many from Napa Valley. Dominated by black and red fruit flavors, Alexander Valley Cabs still have enough richness to stand up to thick, fatty cuts of beef. Grilled ribeye steaks would make for a fantastic pairing!
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