5 wines you need to try this summer

Summer is almost here and the weather is warming up. That means it’s time to shelf the heavy red wines and break out some more refreshing, crisp, higher acidity wines. We’re talking Sancerre, Rose, and Picpoul! Of course there are so many options out there, so today we wanted to share a few of our favorite must haves.

Grenache/Garnacha

If you want a red wine but don’t want something super heavy, consider a Garnacha wine. This Spanish wine is super affordable, costing usually around $10 to $20 per bottle. It’s very quaffable, and big on flavor! Still they’re rarely heavy or thick. Think fresh cherries, raspberry, red whips and strawberries!

Sancerre

Arguably the most delicious, summer friendly white wine around, and classy too! Sancerre is just Sauvignon Blanc, produced in the Loire Valley of France. While Sauv Blanc tends to be a bit thicker and riper in California, the stuff made in France is bone dry and comes with a laser acidity.

Beaujolais

Not just any Beaujolais, but a CRU! You gotta step it up if you want to get the most from this oft-maligned region. This red wine has a light body and refreshingly light fruit profile that’s perfect when the mercury starts rising.

Rose

Duh! Need we say more?

Albarino

Spain’s number one white wine deserves a spot here because it’s bracing acidity and truly represents sunlight in a bottle, in our opinion. Citrus spiked and just flat out refreshing.

 

Finding affordable Burgundy wine

The Burgundy wine market is a bit of a minefield. You have small allocations of very high priced wines from the precious Grand Crus, and beneath that you have a derth of lower priced and often uninspired quality wines from the villages. Where is the balance you ask?

Well, with the holiday season here, we found ourselves paying a lot of money for all sorts of things – a new 4k flat screen tv from Vizio, a replacement hot tub cover for $300, increased heating bills, and so on. This is a common thread during the holiday season. Naturally you want to supplement special dinners from Thanksgiving to Christmas with great wines. So where do you find a killer bottle of Burg?

Photo credit
Finding a great quality to price ratio isn’t easy in the most prestigious French wine regions Photo credit

Avoid the Grand Crus

This probably goes without saying, but Burgundy and “affordable” are rarely seen in the same context, but if you know where to look you can find some great values. While Bordeaux and exclusive Napa Cabs seem to be stuck in a holding pattern of prices, Burgundy continues to soar upward every year. To start, you probably want to avoid any wines labeled with the generic, all-encompassing “Bourgogne” designation, which is meant for the lowest rung. Instead, try to find something with a specific region – Cote d’Or or Challonais on the bottle. This great article in the Wall St. Journal explores the subject in more depth. Then you should look for any bottle with a specific village designation – i.e.

Five picks:

  • 2013 Domain Dureuil-Janthial Vauvry Rully Premier Cru ($36)
  • 2014 Patrick Piuze Terroir de Chablis ($22)
  • Domaine Claudie Jobard, Montagne La Folie, Rully 2014
  • Domaine Jean-Philippe Fichet, Vieilles Vignes, Bourgogne 2014
  • Domaine Lebreuil, Aux Grands Liards, Savigny-lès-Beaune 2014