Are you ready for summer? Whether it’s a grill-out, rooftop party, or picnic-in-the-park, there is a whole wide world of wines that pair with warm weather fun. And for BBQs, you’ll need several different shades. For slabs of steak and saucy spare ribs, reach for such powerhouse reds as Primitivo (Italy’s answer to Zinfandel) and Mourvèdre from Bandol. Try a more medium-bodied red for cheeseburgers: Spanish Mencia and Austrian Blaufränkisch are equally lithe and juicy. And for your leaner meats like grilled chicken and turkey, opt for a leaner red: Beaujolais reds and Oregon Pinot Noirs are light, soft, mineral-tinged, and absolute crowd-pleasers.
Meanwhile, grilled veggies call for an array of white wines: Stock up on Albariños, Savoie whites, Chenin Blanc, and California Chardonnays for all your grilled asparagus/corn/zucchini/eggplant needs. In fact, Chenin Blanc from the Loire Valley has such racy acidity and smoky intensity that it pairs splendidly almost all BBQ foods—from spicy chicken wings to pulled pork sandwiches. And don’t forget rosé wines: they pair with just about anything under the sun.
Of course, you can chill your whites and rosés—but don’t forget your reds. After all, red wine is a beverage like any other and it’s really hot outside. Put a summery spin on even your boldest reds by drinking them with a full chill on them. Whether you refrigerate your bottles or plunge them in an ice bath, there’s no wrong way to drink your reds.
There’s a place for wine at every stage of your warm weather fun. Grab a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc and hit the beach or get your kicks at a BBQ with a bottle of Bandol.