Wine Brings Summer Fun for Everyone

Wine Brings Summer Fun for Everyone

During Summertime, when the temperatures rise and even the simplest activities can mean beads of sweat trickling down your face, we favor light clothing that takes advantage of a cool breeze.  And when it comes time to relax and enjoy a class (or two) of wine, bold and heavy reds just don’t seem to be the right choice. They’re great for sipping while cuddled up in front of a fire with a special someone, but not ideal underneath full sun. Summer calls for cool, refreshing California wines that delight the palate and invite you to enjoy all the fun that warm weather brings.

When thinking Summer and light, refreshing wines, the old standards are typically Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. Let’s think outside the bottle and look to other varietals that originated in other countries, but are part of today’s active California viticulture.

 

Albariño

Produced from the Albarino grape, this white wine is predominantly produced in select towns of Galicia, Spain and in the Vino Verdhe region of Portugal, where it’s called Alvarinho. This light, high-acidity wine has a distinctive botanical aroma and notes of citrus, melon and peach with a salty finish. The grape responds well to heat and humidity and can be found produced in California regions of Napa, Clarksburg, Santa Ynez Valley, Edna Valley and Los Carneros AVA.

Food pairing: This is definitely a seafood lovers wine. Ceviche, mussels, fish tacos, shrimp and seafood pasta are all good choices.

 

Arneis

The Arneis is an ancient and found primarily in Alba in Piemonte, Italy. Originally used to soften the tannins of the red Nebbiolo, the Arneis grape has grown into its own varietal. The name in the Piemonte dialect means “little rascal” because it is difficult to grow. It is prone to rot if not picked past September and can develop a powdery mildew. However, when mastered, the payoff is a tasty young medium-bodied wine with low acidity and refreshing stone fruit and citrus nuances. A few California wineries produce wines with this varietal.

Food pairing: Try this wine with appetizers or perhaps burrata and charcuterie. If you would rather drink with a meal, consider light soups or simply prepared chicken, pork or veal.

 

Semillon

Semillon is the third most grown grape in France, but you can find wineries in the warm climate regions of California producing intriguing offerings. It’s mainly used as the primary grape in Sauternes dessert blends and in French White Bordeaux blends, but stands on it own as a dry white varietal. Expect a full body much like Chardonnay with a drinking experience closer to Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Gris. Grapes grown in warmer climates will produce a wine with notes of ripe papaya and mango, while colder climates will offer more acidity and citrus notes.

Food pairing: Semillon won’t compete with the food you serve and its medium body will hold up to spicy aromatic dishes. Try drinking with Indian curry dishes or spicy Asian option.

So when the mercury rises, reach out for one of these delightful wines and enjoy!

 

Isabella Crisman