It’s the Fourth of July and summer is officially here. When you think of summer holidays, images of burgers and beers generally come to mind. Well, I’ve got the wine aficionados covered as well, with this list of my favorite summer wines.
- Union Sacre “La Marianne” Chardonnay 2016 Creamy, yet elegant, with bold flavors of lemon curd and Crème brûlée. If you’re a Chardonnay drinker but you’re worried about it feeling to heavy on the palate when relaxing outside, fear not: Union Sacre has struck a perfect balance of old world and new world styles, resulting in a lighter Chardonnay that won’t weigh you down. (Their “Belle de Nuit” Gewürztraminer is incredible as well. It was hard to choose between the two.)
- Casca Bote Branco Vinho Verde NV
- Light, refreshing, and easy to drink. This Vinho Verde is bone-dry and zesty, with notes of key lime and stone fruit. It’s also slightly effervescent, making it a sure-fire way to cool you off when the sun is beating down on you. And at around $12 per bottle, its a seriously great value too!
- Aequorea Pinot Gris 2017
- This wine is wonderfully unique and pairs with the lighter dishes of the summer. Aequorea is modeled after the Alsatian style of Pinot Gris and is skin fermented, resulting in a deep rose-gold colored wine with notes of mandarin oranges, nectarines and spice, with an almost salty ocean minerality and a refreshing finish. (One of my favorite wines of all time.)
- Pere Mata Cava Cupada Rosé NV
- Summer is never complete without sparkling rosé! This Cava Rosé is the perfect companion to any picnic or pool party. Crisp and snappy in style, with hints of raspberry, white flowers, and spice. It also boasts a fullness and finesse that you can only get from a truly outstanding Cava.
- Croix Ruxton Sands Rosé of Pinot Noir 2017
- If bubbles aren’t your thing, this still rosé from Croix Estates is sure to whet your whistle. Extremely bright with mouthwatering acidity and tart watermelon flavors. Made by Kirk Venge, this is a rosé for the hottest of summer days, when you just need something crisp and refreshing to make the heat feel a little less intense.
- Venge Jewell Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2017
- Kirk Venge can truly do no wrong. This Sauvignon Blanc made from 100% Musqué grapes is a highly aromatic wine that everyone will enjoy (even those who don’t like Sauv Blanc. I should know, I’m generally in that category.) You’ll find lots of tropical pineapple, and cantaloupe flavors, with a fresh floral characteristic on the nose. This is a wine that has to equal.
- Peay Scallop Shelf Pinot Noir 2014
- A summer wine list can’t be all white wines, can it? This Pinot Noir is a perfect red wine for under the hot summer sun. Made in an aromatic and feminine style, it’s light and easy to drink, while still remaining sensual and full. This wine boasts tart raspberry and citrus flavors and a perfect acidity for when you start to get a little too warm.
- E16 Baby Rattlesnake Vineyard Barbera 2016
- E16 Barbera is a fantastic addition to any picnic or barbecue. An Italian grape made in a truly Californian style, you’ll find strong dark fruit and mocha flavors, with a vibrant rich mouthfeel. This wine is great with a slight chill on it too, so no matter your poison, it will delight red and white drinkers alike.
- Château d’Epire Grand Cru d’Anjou Savennières 2016
- Let’s talk about value. For delicious French Wines that won’t break the bank, look no further than the Loire Valley. This wonderful Chenin Blanc is an incredible find: dry and tart, with honeyed red apple, white pepper, and true Old World Minerality. For those who tend to gravitate away from the Vouvray style of Chenin, this Savennières truly hits the spot. Pair this with a plate of soft cheeses for a perfect afternoon picnic.
- Le Cellier du Palais Apremont 2015
- Most people have never heard of the grape Jacquére, but for those who have never gotten the chance to try this delicious varietal, now’s the time. This wine from Savoie, France, is made with 100% Jacquére, and boasts strong honeysuckle and citrus notes, making this the ideal wine to lounge in the shade and sip on, while letting the worries of the world slowly slip away.
- Bonus Wine: La Caudrina “La Selvatica” Asti NV
- For those who have a sweet tooth, this is the perfect summer wine for you: meet the slightly sweet, delicate and elegant Moscato di Asti. After the barbecue when the hot dogs disappear and the apple pies come out to play, pull out a bottle of this sophisticated sparkling wine, and bring the night to a perfect close.
There are so many wonderful summer wines, it’s hard to narrow it down. Hopefully my top ten are enough to get your sunny season started off right.
What’s your favorite summer wine?