We’ve been experiencing the last vestiges of Summer here in the United States (well, except for our friends in Alaska). Autumn is soon upon us and there’s no reason to leave those lovely summer wines in the cooler. I’ve been enjoying my favorites, the Martin Codax Albarino, from Spain, Fantini Trebbiano-d-Abruzzo from Italy and most recently I found a new favorite white, Domaine Guillemarine Picpoul from France. We were in Burlington, Vermont and had the fortune of stopping in at the Vin Bar . I had never heard of a Picpoul wine, let alone tried it. This is a beautiful white wine, similar to the Albarino but with more acidity to it. The price is reasonable and if you’re lucky enough to find it in your shop, I recommend getting two bottles.
Keep in mind almost all white wines that have a high degree of minerality and acidity go with shellfish and seafood. Another easy way to figure a pairing is where the foods come from. If you’re eating food of a particular country, France, Spain, Italy, etc., then those foods will naturally go with the wine of that region. And, if there is a lot of acidity in the food (such as tomatoes) then a wine with acidity (Barbera) will go with that food. Salty and Sweet pair well (Port and Blue Cheese, or Sauterne and Blue Cheese), and sweet fruits (cherries, plums, berries) go well with most Rosé wines, dry (Pinot Noir) and not as dry (Grenache Rosé or Mourvèdre Rosé – or a blend).
Another thought when you’re experiencing warm weather, you can, and should, chill the lighter of the red wines to 60 degrees. The lighter reds that I keep in my cooler are; Pinot Noir, Barbera, Petite Sirah, and Australian Shiraz (the lighter style, not the dark inky style). These wines will change as they warm up and their flavors will soften, giving you different notes and aromas to experience.
The table below is a simple list of easy to access wine for warm/hot weather and some easy pairings. Your tastes may differ, this is just a starting point. What will you be pairing with your chilled wine?
|Type of Wine||Name of Wine||Easy Pairing|
|Albarino||Burgans Albarino Baixas Rioja White||Spicy Indian and Thai|
|Albarnio||Martin Codax||Arugula Salad|
|Chenin Blanc (South African)||De Morgenzon Reserve||Turkey, Cranberry|
|Chenin Blanc (Blend)||Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc/Viognier||Pork, Nuts, Cheddar Cheese|
|Grüner Veltliner||Höpler||Wiener Schnitzel, Green Beans,|
|Pinot Gris or Pinot Grigio||DaVinci||Lemon Chicken, Fennel salad|
|Riesling (Dry)||Chateau Ste. Michelle Cold Creek Riesling||Asian Food|
|Sauvignon Blanc (French)||Joseph Destinea Mellot||Chicken, Turkey, Chives, Green Veggies|
|Vermentino||Fattoria Pagliaatura Vermentino||Pasta with Seafood, Herbs & Citrus|
|Vino Verde||Casal Garcia||Light Cheese, Chips (drinks well alone)|
|Viognier||Cline||Curry or Asian Food|
|White Bordeaux||Ducasse Blanc||Tarragon Chicken, Asparagus|
|White Burgundy||La Chablisienng||Roast Chicken with Mushrooms|
|Grenache||Alloy Wine Works “Tin City”||Melon and Prosciutto, Salade Nicoise|
|Tempranillo||Mas Que Vinos Ercavio||Greek Cuisine, Paella, Grilled Sausage|
|Pinot Noir||Rive Sud||Grilled Pork or Beef, Quiche|
|Provence||Bandol||Artichokes, Caesar Salad|
|Barbera||Mati||Grilled Beef, Mushrooms|
|Grenache (American)||Alban Vineyards Estate Grenache||Spicy Grilled Meat and Vegetables.|
|Petite Sirah||McManis||Barbeque Beef, Duck, Lamb|
|Pinot Noir||Acrobat||Herbed Pork Roast, Lamb|