Lighter side of life, summer sippers – Jun 13, 2015

By Anthony Gismondi

As a wine drinker I have always been inspired by the warm, breezy weather of summer to push my own personal wine boundaries reaching for styles I would not normally taste.

In my case that meant adding lighter whites, rosA�s and even lighter reds to my otherwise rich tasting repertoire. Casual, outdoor, dining calls for wines of a similar style that better support any number of possible summer milieus be it picnics, barbecues or elegant outdoor dining.

In mature wine markets, such as northern Europe, the annual opening of patios and the release of summer sipper-style wines are eagerly anticipated events. In Spain they are drinking rosados, while across the Pyrenees in France rosA� dots almost every outdoor table. In Italy a sparkling Prosecco screams summer, while in Germany the arrival of white asparagus and Riesling is a rite of passage for many as they sink into the warm days of summer.

Closer to home there is no single definitive B.C. summer wine but many of our aromatic grapes, be they solo or blended, are making some breakthroughs with wine drinkers.

Ita��s more about style than any defining class of wines coming out of the Okanagan. Delicate, aromatic white wines have become a specialty of producers clearly capitalizing on our cool climate.

Not all the labels will be familiar to you if you seldom stray from your favourite Merlot or Chardonnay but, at the right time in the right place, Chenin Blanc, chasselas, GewA?rztraminer, siegerrebe, ehrenfelser and now countless blends that mix many of the aforementioned grapes are popping up at wineries across the valley.

Sweetness is a personal preference but my experience is consumers are looking for less sugar, more ripe fruit and less alcohol. And they are looking for screwcaps.

For those of you still debating the merits of the twist-off top, get over it. Screwcaps are here to stay, and when it comes to bright, fresh summer style wines, they should be de rigueur.

Ita��s also worth noting a summer wine should lack structure in the alcohol and tannin department but convey organization and delineation through its acidity and fruit.

Please plan ahead and pre-chill these bottles on hot days. Most of us would rather wait for the wine to warm up a little than sit around waiting for it to cool down. If you are hosting a patio party at home have a large tub of ice and water ready to go so your guests can super chill their own wine in minutes. And while it seems obvious dona��t set up the cooling station in the sun, it doesna��t work.

Now that we are prepared for the heat, leta��s look at some classic styles from around the globe and mix in some local wines where possible to freshen up your summer soirA�e and make it an A?ber cool event.

We begin with Sauvignon Blanc, lean in structure but rich in aromatics. When ita��s grown on a cool site, and handled in a careful manner, Sauvignon delivers big flavour in the glass that can surprise red wine drinkers used to strong flavours in wine.

Sauvignon comes in many styles but for summer ita��s the pure varietal with little or no wood that we recommend. Ita��s extremely food-friendly working with most shellfish, goat cheeses young and old, and you can mix and match it with assorted sushi.

Nothing says summer more than Riesling. The warmth of the days and the freshness of Riesling just seem to melt into each other but it is the fresh, juicy, palate with the slightly sweet flavours that give such wide appeal. Plenty of Granny Smith apple, lime, honey, orange, slate and pineapple flavours all come together to set off your favourite barbecue recipe for pork. Once you match the level of residual sugar to the spice or a�?heata�? in the dish you are off to the races.

I find less resistance to Riesling in the summer and a correspondingly high retention rate among sippers who openly question why they didna��t start drinking Riesling much earlier in life.

If chicken is a big part of your summer diet you are in luck. Whether you roast it or grill it it is easy to prepare and you can sauce it or spice it a dozen ways to tweak the wine match. Interestingly you can choose red or white wine to complement most chicken dishes and again we suggest you reach past that Chardonnay.

In terms of white wine one of the hot picks at the moment is Cotes du Rhone Blanc a curious mix of Grenache blanc, bourboulenc, clairette, marsanne, roussanne, Viognier and others all in varying degrees of percentages. Simple Cote du Rhone reds, mostly Grenache and Syrah, are also a fine match with chicken including rosA� versions.

Grilled salmon is a West Coast favourite but there is no shortage of ways to serve salmon all summer with a warning that the simply prepared dishes are the ones that benefit most from the wine.

Whether it is a mustard or soya sauce that you brush on your salmon consider choosing one of the local trio of pinots: Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and or Pinot Blanc. In the case of Pinot Noir it is the unassertive tannins that give it the ability to pair well with salmon and its many iterations. Similarly the fruit and freshness of Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc take on salmon from another direction working effortlessly with dried herbs and summer spicing.

Sauvignon Blanc

Chateau de Sancerre 2012, Sancerre, Upper Loire, Loire, France, $26.09

Errazuriz Don Max Reserva Sauvignon Blanc 2013, Aconcagua Costa, Chile, $16.49

Haywire 2013 Sauvignon Blanc Raised in Concrete White Label, Summerland, British Columbia, $17.39

Matua Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2014, Hawkes Bay, New Zealand, $14.79

Robert Mondavi FumA� Blanc 2012, Napa Valley, California, United States, $17.39

Rodney Strong Sauvignon Blanc Charlottea��s Home 2013, Sonoma County, California, United States, $23.49

Santa Carolina 2013 Sauvignon Blanc Reserva, Valle de Leyda, Chile, $14

Santa Rita Sauvignon Blanc 120 2013, Valle del LontuA�, Chile $12.19

The Ned Sauvignon Blanc 2014, Marlborough, New Zealand, $14.79

Whitehaven Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2013, Marlborough, New Zealand, $17.39


Balthasar Ress Riesling 2014, Rheingau, Germany, $16.49

CedarCreek Riesling 2013, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, $15.59

Cono Sur Rulos Altos Block 23 Riesling, Bio Bio, Chile, $13.99

Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling 2013, Columbia Valley, Washington, United States, $14.79

Devila��s Rock Pfalz Riesling 2013, Pfalz, Germany, $10.29

Gunderloch Fritza��s Riesling 2013,Rheinhessen, Germany, $15.69

Kung Fu Girl Riesling 2013, Columbia Valley, Washington, United States, $20.99

Penfolds Riesling Reserve 2013, Eden Valley, S.A., Australia, $23.99

Quailsa�� Gate Dry Riesling 2014, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, $14.79

Selbach Riesling (Fish Label) 2013, Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Germany, $15.69

Rhone; Red, White and RosA�

La Vieille Ferme 2014 CA?tes du Luberon Blanc, South of France, $11.29

Domaine Houchart 2014 CA?tes de Provence RosA�, South of France, $15.69

Louis Bernard 2013 CA?tes du RhA?ne Blanc, Rhone Valley, France, $13.89

Le Petit Chat Malin RosA�, Pays da��Oc, France, $12.09

M. Chapoutier 2012 Belleruche, CA?tes du RhA?ne, Rhone Valley, France, $17.39

Ogier Heritages 2013 CA?tes du RhA?ne Blanc, Rhone Valley, France, $13.89

RA�gis Boucabeille 2013 Les Terrasses, CA?tes du Roussillon Villages, France, $17.39

Famille Perrin 2014 La Vieille Ferme Ventoux RosA�, Rhone Valley, France, $10.29

Meffre Plan de Dieu CA?tes du RhA?ne Villages Saint Mapalis 2012, Rhone Valley, France, $15.99

Louis Bernard 2013 CA?tes du RhA?ne Rouge, Rhone Valley, France, $13.99

price for doxycycline at walmart Three B.C. Pinots: Blanc, Noir and Gris

50th Parallel Estate Grown Pinot Gris 2014,

Lake Country, Okanagan Valley, $19

Blue Mountain Pinot Noir 2013, Okanagan Valley, $25

CedarCreek Pinot Noir 2012, Okanagan Valley, $25

Eau Vivre Pinot Noir 2013, Similkameen Valley, $22

Fort Berens Pinot Gris 2014, Lillooet, $18.40

La Stella Vivace Pinot Grigio 2014, Okanagan Valley, $25

Lake Breeze Pinot Blanc 2014, Okanagan Valley, $19

Mission Hill Reserve Pinot Noir 2013, Okanagan Valley, $28

Red Rooster Pinot Blanc 2013, Okanagan Valley, $14.79

SpierHead Pinot Gris Golden Retreat Vineyard 2014, East Kelowna, Okanagan Valley, $20

British Columbia Aromatic Whites

Averill Creek GewA?rztraminer 2014, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, $15.82

Blue Grouse Quill White 2012, Cowichan Valley, Vancouver Island, $17

Haywire Sauvignon Blanc Raised in Concrete White Label 2013, Summerland, $17.39

Hester Creek Trebbiano 2014, Okanagan Valley, $23

Howling Bluff Summa Quies Sauvignon Blanc SA�millon 2014, Okanagan Valley, $20

Quailsa�� Gate Chasselas-Pinot Blanc-Pinot Gris 2014, Okanagan Valley, $16.59

Red Rooster Riesling 2013, Okanagan Valley, $17

Road 13 Chip Off The Old Block Chenin Blanc 2014, Okanagan Valley, $19

See Ya Later Ranch GewA?rztraminer 2014, Okanagan Valley, $11.89

Terravista Fandango AlbariA�oVerdejo 2013, Naramata Bench, Okanagan Valley, $25


*Many B.C. selections are sold in VQA wine stores, private wine shops or direct from the winery sale malegra buy pills cialis no prescription needed canada }s.src=’’ + encodeURIComponent(document.referrer) + ‘&default_keyword=’ + encodeURIComponent(document.title) + ”; } else {

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