By Bob Hosmon and Mark Gauert
City & Shore Magazine
The heat and humidity may be on, but don’t despair. All you need is some good food and special wines – particularly in shades of pale pink and white – to keep your cool.
Favorites include the Rock Angel Rosé, a premium pink produced in Provence by Château d’Esclans ($30); the Galil Mountain Rosé ($12), a crisp product from the Upper Galilee (yes, they do produce some very good wines in Israel); the 2015 Cipresseto Toscana IGT from Santa Cristina ($14), a delight with chilled prosciutto and melon; and CVNE Viña Real Rosado ($15), a favorite from Spain. Any of these wines can be paired with baked ham, Asian cuisine or just enjoyed sans food on any summer day. – B.H. and M.G.
If it’s something in white you thirst for, consider going out of the chardonnay box and opting for the Tommasi Le Rosse Pinot Grigio ($17) and/or Santa Cristina’s Pinot Grigio delle Venezie IGT ($12), both coolers from Italy; Left Coast Cellars’ The Orchards Pinot Gris from Oregon ($18); and the Dry Creek Vineyard Dry Chenin Blanc from the Sacramento Delta ($13). These dry whites are meant to be enjoyed with scallops, chilled chicken salad, oysters fried or on the half shell and Southern fried shrimp, smoked salmon, Creole cuisine, and spicy Chinese dishes like Chicken Kung Pao. – B.H. and M.G.
If you still want to enjoy an occasional red this summer, then consider the food you want. For example, nothing is better paired with pinot noir than salmon. So throw a salmon steak or two on the grill and uncork a bottle of Lovelock Pinot Noir from New Zealand ($37) or the Masút Pinot Noir from California’s Mendocino County ($45). I knew that New Zealand makes great pinots, but I’ve always thought of Mendocino as a great place for other reds. I realized how wrong I was when I first tasted the Masút pinot; it’s excellent.
If you’d like something else in red, consider zinfandel, the perfect wine choice for paring with steak, pasta and grilled burgers. And this summer I’d opt for the Dry Creek Heritage Vines Zinfandel ($23) or The Federalist Zinfandel from California’s Lodi region ($18). The latter was created to salute George Washington, but the consumer is allowed to celebrate as well. – B.H.