I admit, when it comes to June through August my tastes in wine tend to go towards white and rose. But just because the weather has warmed up doesn’t mean that there aren’t a bevy of fantastic reds to enjoy this summer. And let’s face it, when it comes to enjoying a big juicy steak fresh off the grill sometimes even the heartiest of roses can fall flat.
Chateau de la Chaize Brouilly Beaujolais, France Reg. 16.99 Sale 9.99 100% Gamay
Beaujolais is one of the most fantastically versatile of all reds because of its light vibrant personality. While not suitable for big heavy cuts of meat, it’s wonderful with chicken, hearty fish, burgers, and especially barbecue. And best of all serving it with a moderate chill really makes the zesty blackberry and cherry flavors pop while making it a great thirst quencher to boot.
l’Uvaggio Barbera Lodi, California $12.99
In the past five years Lodi has become the proud producer of some fantastic value priced wines. It’s always been part of the larger California wine growing juggernaut, but has only recent come into its own as a distinct appellation. It’s best known superstar has been Zinfandel, but many producers have been branching out in their planting and bottling. This fantastic juicy red is bursting with bright fruit flavors but has a nice undercurrent of acidity that helps to keep it balanced. It’s big and bold without being overpowering, which makes it a natch for grilled foods.
Springfield Firefinch Ripe Red Robertson, South Africa $14.99 Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc
Springfield has long been one of my favorite SA producers- their Wild Yeast Chardonnay and Life from Stone Sauvignon Blanc are stupendous. About four years ago they started producing a more value conscious line of wines under the Firefinch label. This fantastic red is all about fruit- ripe plums, ripe raspberries, ripe currents. It’s still a dry red but it’s juicy fruit helps it stand up to spicier barbecue sauces and is great with Cajun seasoning or steak au poivre.
Borsao Monte Oton Campo de Borja, Spain $7.99 100% Grenache
Bodegas Borsao has been responsible for several of our great values from Spain at The Wine Seller- Vina Borgia, Tres Picos and their Rosado, just to name a few. So it’s no surprise that this new arrival is a whole lot of wine for $8 and earned itself 88 points from the Wine Advocate. Grenache is another grape, like Gamay, that does very well with some chill on it, but with a little more juiciness and heft it make it extraordinarily versatile.