Red, White & Bubbles: 5 Fabulous Fourth of July Wines!

Whether you’re hosting a party at home, spending the day at the beach or traveling to your favorite vacation spot it’s time to select some fabulous Fourth of July wines!

Since Summer celebrations often involve groups of friends and family, opt for wines that are refreshing and delicious that won’t break the bank. Lets face it, it’s hard to contemplate an aged Bordeaux while tending to burgers and dogs on the grill AND supervising kids doing cannonballs into the pool! From a lively, Italian sparkler to a juicy, Australian red, here are five fabulous Fourth of July wines for $15 or less:

Prestige-Prosecco-DOC-Brut-Bottle-Shot-750mlMionetto Prosecco Brut, Treviso, Italy NV ($12): This Italian sparkler is made from 100% Glera grapes using the Charmat Method. This method allows winemakers to produce a delicious sparkling wine without the hefty price tag. Fermentation in stainless steel preserves its fresh, fruity notes of citrus, pear and green apple and crisp, dry finish. Prosecco is the perfect sparkler to enjoy on its own as an aperitif, or as a nice complement to a variety of Summer fare. It is best enjoyed fresh and young and will not benefit from additional aging. It’s also the perfect sparkling wine to use as a base for Mimosas, Bellinis or other sparkling wine-based cocktails like our Fourth of July Pomegranate-Aperol Royale!

Mason Cellars Pomelo Sauvignon Blanc, California, 2014 ($12): From Sancerre tofourth-of-july-wines-pomelo-sauv-blanc-bottle-shot White Bordeaux, Sauvignon Blanc is one of our Summer staples due to its crisp, refreshing nature and Summery citrus notes. So we were happy to discover Mason Cellar’s Pomelo Sauvignon Blanc – a delightful wine at an amazing price!  The high elevation of the Mason Vineyard in Lake County’s Kelsey Bench and arc of rich, red volcanic soils, provides a unique growing region for ripe Sauvignon Blanc year after year. This wine opens with aromas of fragrant orange blossom, ruby grapefruit and white peach. On the palate, notes of lime zest and passion fruit really pop. As if that weren’t enough, this humble little Sauvignon Blanc came in at number forty on Wine Spectator’s 2015 Wines of the Year!

fourth-of-july-wines-kim-crawford-unoaked-chardonnay-bottleKim Crawford Unoaked Chardonnay, Marlborough, New Zealand ($15): Since oak adds weight and flavors of baking spices to wine, we mainly indulge in oaked wines in the Fall and Winter months. UN-oaked Chardonnay on the other hand, is light, crisp and fruity and perfect for Summer! The grapes for this Chardonnay from Kim Crawford are from selected vineyards in Marlborough and Hawke’s Bay on the East Coast of New Zealand. The grapes were allowed to attain maximum ripeness and picked at just the right time to create a lovely, fruit-driven wine with notes of stone fruit and pear, coupled with delightful citrus character. A secondary malolactic fermentation also imparts a generous mouthfeel that will still appeal to Chardonnay lovers.

Bodegas Juan Gil Monastrell, Jumilla, Spain ($14):  Spain is a wonderful place to fourth-of-july-wines-juan-gil-jumilla-2discover amazing value wines. While you may be familiar with Rioja and Ribera del Duero, a region called Jumilla is also home to many vinous gems like this one from Bodegas Juan Gil. This wine is made primarily from Monastrell (aka Mourvèdre and Mataró), a red wine grape that was harvested from very old vines. Chalky, rocky limestone soils that are poor in nutrients make the vineyard ideal for growing Monastrell. This wine was aged in French oak for 12 months. The result is a wine with a deep, purplish-black color and heady aromas of ripe currant, red berries and smoke. Rich, juicy flavors of crème de cassis and blackberry persist on the palate along with supple, ripe tannins.

fourth-of-july-wines-domaine-fontanyl-roseRavoire & Fils Domaine Fontanyl Côtes de Provence Rosé, Provence, France ($15): If there is ONE wine you should stock your fridge with this Summer it’s rosé. No, I’m not crazy and I haven’t been drinking. Ok, maybe I’ve been drinking, but you need to trust me here! Provence is the birthplace of dry rosé which should NEVER be confused with White Zinfandel, a purely American invention known for its poor quality (read more here). This bottle from Domaine Fontanyl is made from a blend of grapes (i.e. Cinsault, Grenache, Tibouren). It gets its color from the juice remaining in contact with the skins for a few hours to impart its glorious, hallmark rose-gold hue. This wine has notes of cherries and red berries and is incredibly food friendly. So if you haven’t already, please take a chance on rosé this Summer. I promise you’ll be glad you did!

Yalumba “Y Series” Shiraz-Viognier, South Australia, Australia ($14): We love Shiraz’s fourth-of-july-wines-yalumba-shiraz-viognier-bottle-3juicy lusciousness for Summer and this wine makes us like it even more! The addition of Viognier, a fruity white grape, tames the wine’s tannins and imparts beautiful, floral aromatics while accentuating the wine’s fruit flavors. The practice of blending Shiraz (aka Syrah) and Viognier dates back hundred of years in France’s Northern Rhone wine region and is nicely represented by this Australian gem. Yalumba’s Y Series offers wonderful value wines for those who adore Australia’s bounty of delicious wines. This medum-bodied red is a deep crimson in color with notes of violet, plum, blueberry and dark cherry as well as plush tannins and a delightful finish.

We hope you enjoy our Fourth of July wines all Summer long! Have a happy and safe holiday weekend!




The post Red, White & Bubbles: 5 Fabulous Fourth of July Wines! appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.

Fourth of July Perfect Pairing: Kitchen Clambake & Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc

For those of you who haven’t decided on your Fourth of July menu, you may want to consider this exceptional, Summer-inspired Kitchen Clambake from The Barefoot Contessa. This delicious mixture of succulent lobster, shrimp, clams and hearty kielbasa has always been one of my favorite Fourth of July meals. It provides all the delightful flavors of Summer without all the... Read More

The post Fourth of July Perfect Pairing: Kitchen Clambake & Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.

Continue Reading >

Fourth of July Perfect Pairing: Kitchen Clambake & Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc

Summer, Fourth of July, Perfect Pairing, wine, The Glamorous Gourmet, Barefoot Contessa, Chateauneuf du Pape Blanc

For those of you who haven’t decided on your Fourth of July menu, you may want to consider this exceptional, Summer-inspired dish from The Barefoot Contessa. This delicious mixture of succulent lobster, shrimp, clams and hearty kielbasa has always been one of my favorite Fourth of July meals. It provides all the delightful flavors of Summer without all the schlepping and sand of a clambake on the beach. The flavors are also beautifully enhanced by the Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc, which Ina recommends serving with it in her iconic “The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook.” The wonderful synergy between wine and dish elevates this duo to “Perfect Pairing” status!

While the ingredients can be a tad pricey, this dish compensates beautifully with its ease of preparation and quick cooking time. Once the prep work is done and the shellfish are cleaned, everything is essentially piled into one big pot and the whole thing cooks in under an hour. Also, upon the ceremonial removing of the lid, you are sure to hear some audible “oohs,” “aahs” and “oh no she didn’ts” from your guests – it definitely has a “wow” factor!

Although many people think of Châteauneuf-du-Pape as a red wine, a white wine is also produced from this region located in France’s Southern Rhone Valley. The white incarnation is a blend of some relatively obscure grape varieties including Roussanne, Grenache Blanc, Picpoul, Bourboulenc and Clairette. Despite their obscurity, the end result is quite lovely consisting of a medium-bodied white wine with a delightful minerality and aromatic fruit and floral notes. These wines walk the line between a Sauvignon Blanc and a Chardonnay which is why they pair so well with the clambake; the wine is rich enough to stand up to the lobster but has enough acidity to complement the lighter shellfish too. Some wonderful producers of Châteauneuf du Pape Blanc include Château La NertheChâteau de Beaucastel, and Château Mont-Redon.

In addition to the wine, serve the Kitchen Clambake with fresh corn on the cob slathered with butter, crusty bread and mugs of the seasoned broth the seafood has cooked in. I also like to have Old Bay Seasoning on hand which is so delicious with just about any type of shellfish. For an added touch of glamour, be sure to greet your guests with our signature Fourth of July Pomegranate Aperol Royale. I hope you enjoy this pairing and have a fabulous Fourth – God Bless America!





“Kitchen Clambake
from Ina Garten’s “The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook”
Serves 6 to 8

1 1/2 pounds kielbasa
3 cups chopped yellow onions (2 large onions)
2 cups chopped leeks, well cleaned (2 leeks, white parts only)
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 1/2 pounds small potatoes (red or white)
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1/2 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
2 dozen littleneck clams, scrubbed
2 dozen steamer clams, scrubbed
2 pounds mussels, cleaned and debearded
1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, in the shell
3 (1 1/2 pound) lobsters
2 cups good dry white wine (since Châteauneuf du Pape Blanc is generally pricey, don’t feel like you need to use it in the recipe – any dry, white wine you enjoy drinking will do!)

1.) Slice the kielbasa diagonally into 1-inch thick slices. Set aside. Saute the onions and leeks in the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed 16 to 20 quart stockpot over medium heat for 15 minutes, until the onions start to brown.
2.) Layer the ingredients on top of the onions in the stockpot in this order: first the potatoes, salt, and pepper; then the kielbasa, little neck clams, steamer clams, mussels, shrimp, and lobsters. Pour in the white wine. Cover the pot tightly and cook over medium-high heat until steam just begins to escape from the lid, about 15 minutes. Lower the heat to medium and cook another 15 minutes. The clambake should be done. Test to be sure the potatoes are tender, the lobsters are cooked, and the clams and mussels are open.
3.) Remove the lobsters to a wooden board, cut them up, and crack the claws. With large slotted spoons, remove the seafood, potatoes, and sausages to a large bowl and top with the lobsters. Season the broth in the pot to taste, and ladle over the seafood, being very careful to avoid any sand in the bottom.

Red, White & Bubbles: 5 Fabulous Wines for your Fourth of July Festivities!


The Fourth of July is upon us and whether you’re hosting a party at home, spending the day at the beach or traveling to your favorite vacation spot it’s time to select your wines for this festive day!

Summer celebrations often involve groups of friends and family so this is the time of year for wines which are refreshing and delicious that won’t break the bank. Rather than contemplating an aged Bordeaux you’re much more likely to be tending burgers and dogs on the grill while the kids do cannonballs into the pool! From a California bubbly to a juicy Italian red, here are The Wine Atelier’s suggestions for your Fourth of July festivities:

CHANDONFOURTHOFJULYLimited Edition Domaine Chandon Blanc de Noirs Brut, California, NV ($20): Based on its stylish red, white and blue bottle this is the hands down perfect wine to serve your guests on this most patriotic of holidays! Fortunately, what’s in the bottle is equally as fabulous. This limited edition sparkling wine from California’s Domaine Chandon is made using the Methode Traditionelle (aka Methode Champenoise) the same method used to make Champagne. It is a blend of Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, the only two red grapes allowed in the production of Champagne. This sparkling wine is fruit forward and imminently enjoyable when served on its own, but also makes a great selection for making The Glamorous Gourmet’s signature holiday cocktail, the Fourth of July Pomegranate-Aperol Royale!

Seven Hills Winery 2014 RoseSeven Hills Dry Rosé, Columbia Valley, Washington, 2013 ($16): 2013 is the first vintage of this delightful dry rosé from Seven Hills winemaker and owner Casey McClellan whose family has been making wines in Eastern Washington since 1880. Based on specific vineyard blocks of Bordeaux grape varieties which are farmed specifically for this wine, the grapes are hand picked 2-3 weeks prior to the red wine harvest. Crafted in the tradition of classic French Provencal rosés, this wine is delicate and refreshing, pale in color, and bone-dry on the finish (not to be confused with cloyingly sweet white zinfandel or other lesser quality “blush” wines). This rosé is a blend of 70% Cabernet Franc, 15% Petit Verdot and 15% Malbec which exhibits aromas of white flowers and peach followed on the palate by flavors of grapefruit, papaya, fresh herbs and a hint of spice. Due to it’s lovely structure and presence I call this wine the “Red Wine Drinker’s Rosé”!

LaPettegolaJPEGBanfi Vermentino “La Pettegola” IGT Toscana, Italy, 2013 ($20): This delightfully refreshing Italian white wine makes an excellent alternative for those who are currently fans of Pinot Grigio and/or Sauvignon Blanc. It’s time to branch out with Vermentino, an Italian white grape variety most commonly found in the wines of Sardinia and Liguria. “La Pettegola” refers to the birds of this region and 2013 marks the debut vintage of this wine from Banfi. It is made from 100% Vermentino harvested in coastal Tuscany which is fermented entirely in stainless steel to preserves its fresh fruit and delicate floral aromas and flavors that embody the very essence of Summer. It is perfect for enjoying on its own or paired with Summertime cuisine including a shellfish platter, goat cheese salad or a selection of cheeses.

RIOJACRIANZA_largeCune Rioja Crianza, Rioja, Spain, 2010 ($14): CVNE (aka Cune) (Compañía Vinicola del Norte de España) is one of the most renowned and historic bodegas in all of Spain. Most recently, its 2004 Imperial Gran Reserva was awarded the coveted title of Wine Spectator’s 2013 Wine of the Year! The Cune Crianza is their entry level wine which is a juicy blend of indigenous red grapes including Tempranillo (80%), Mazuelo (10%) and Garnacha (10%). The grapes are from Rioja Alta vineyards which are known for producing wines with bright fruit that are light on the palate. This red wine is fermented in stainless steel tanks and then aged in American oak barrels for 1 year. The result is a wine with a bright cherry color and aromas of red berries and spice. On the palate, flavors of raspberry, earth and tobacco accompany a bright acidity and grippy tannins.

SartoriRegoloSartori di Verona Veronese Regolo IGT, Veneto, Italy, 2010 ($24): The Sartori family has been making wine in Italy’s Veneto region for over a century, ever since Pietro Sartori purchased a small vineyard here in 1898. Today Pietro’s great grandson Andrea is at the helm of the Sartori estate today continuing his great grandfather’s unrelenting quest for quality. Only the best grapes from the hilly vineyards of Valpolicella were selected for this wine which is made from 100% Corvina Veronese grown on clay and calcareous soils. The wine is ultimately aged for approximately 18 to 24 months in medium-to-large sized oak casks followed by a minimum of 4 months in the bottle before release. The end result is a wine with a deep ruby color and aromas of roses and kirsch. On the palate, mouth-filling flavors of ripe blackberry, cherry and spice are accompanied by supple tannins and a delightfully food friendly acidity.

All Fourth of July wine selections are available at The Wine Atelier which offers free local delivery in the Boca Raton/Delray Beach area for orders over $50 and $10 shipping for any purchase of 4 bottles or more. To visit The Wine Atelier, please click here and we wish you a very happy and safe Fourth of July!




Fourth of July Cocktail Couture: Pomegranate-Aperol Royale!

Kick off your Summer soirée in style with a very special Fourth of July Cocktail – the Pomegranate-Aperol Royale! This super patriotic drink is a mixture of sparkling wine, Aperol and pomegranate juice garnished with fresh raspberries. It’s incredibly tasty and features Fourth of July’s signature red, white and blue colors. Aperol is a delicious Italian liqueur with a distinct, bright orange color that calls to mind a fabulous,... Read More

The post Fourth of July Cocktail Couture: Pomegranate-Aperol Royale! appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.

Continue Reading >

Cocktail Couture: the Fourth of July Pomegranate-Aperol Royale!

Chandon Sparkling Wine, California, Fourth of July, Pomegranate, Aperol

If you’d like to kick off your Fourth of July celebration in style this year, give this patriotic cocktail a try! This special edition of Cocktail Couture features the Pomegranate-Aperol Royale, an enticing mixture of sparkling wine, Aperol, pomegranate juice and raspberries. In addition to being extremely tasty, this drink also features the signature colors of this most American of holidays: a blue sugared rim; ruby red pomegranate juice mixed with the clementine color of Aperol to create a dazzling, ruby red; and the “white” of the sparkling wine.

Aperol is an Italian liqueur with a very distinct, bright orange color which calls to mind a fiery South Florida sunset. It was created by the Barbieri brothers from Italy’s Veneto region and introduced to Italians at the International Fair of Padua in 1919. This Italian liqueur is an infusion of ingredients including bitter and sweet orange and a variety of carefully selected herbs and roots. The result is a delicious concoction which is simultaneously sweet, bitter, and herbal in nature. Aperol is actually quite similar to Campari just not as bitter, and for those who find Campari a little too intense, Aperol is an excellent alternative.

Our featured sparkling wine for our Pomegranate-Aperol Royale is the fabulous Limited Edition Chandon Blanc de Noirs Brut ($20). The festive red, white and blue limited edition bottle will make a stylish addition to your Fourth of July soirée! This sparkler is made from two red grape varieties, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, and is delightfully fruit-driven and full-flavored. It is also made in the same method as Champagne, Methode Traditionelle, and can be enjoyed on its own or as part of our fabulous cocktail.

In order to keep your cocktails sufficiently chilled pop the fresh raspberries in the freezer the night before your party. They make a colorful, eye-catching garnish and are a delicious treat to enjoy as you finish your drink as well!

So greet your guests with Pomegranate-Aperol Royales and kick off your Fourth of July in patriotic style! The Limited Edition Chandon Blanc de Noirs sparkling wine is available at The Wine Atelier (click here for pricing information) and we are offering free local delivery for orders over $50 in the Boca Raton/Delray Beach area and $10 shipping on any purchase of 4 bottles or more. Wishing you a very fabulous (and safe) Fourth of July weekend!





Fourth of July Pomegranate-Aperol Royale
Makes one drink

1 bottle of Chandon Limited Edition Blanc de Noirs Sparkling Wine
Pomegranate juice
Blue sugar**
1 lime
Frozen raspberries

Put the blue sugar in a saucer or small, shallow dish. Squeeze the juice of one lime into a similar saucer or small, shallow dish. Dip the rim of the Champagne flute first into the lime juice and then immediately into the blue sugar to coat the rim evenly. Shake loose any excess.

Add one frozen raspberry to the bottom of a flute. Pour equal amounts Aperol and pomegranate juice so together they occupy 1/4 of the glass. Gently pour the chilled sparkling wine to fill the rest of the glass. Pouring gently increases the chance of keeping the red and white layers separate. Enjoy!

**To make blue sugar for the rim, add a half cup of regular sugar to a container with a tight fitting lid. Add approximately 3-5 drops of blue food coloring to the sugar in the container, fasten the lid and shake vigorously until all the sugar is colored blue. You can always add more food coloring if you feel the blue isn’t dark enough, just be sure to shake it really well to evenly distribute the color.

Wines of the Week: Sultry Summer Sippers Perfect to Celebrate the Fourth of July & Beyond!

I recently posted a little sentence completion exercise on my Facebook page that read: “It’s hotter than___________.” The results were quite hilarious ranging from “fried wool” to “the hinges of Hades” – point being, I have very witty Facebook friends and in many places of the country it’s just plain HOT!

Last month’s installment of “The Art of Wine & Food,” entitled “Sultry Summer Sippers,” featured wines recommended to help you beat the South Florida heat. With temperatures over 100 degrees this early in the season – what’s a wine lover to do?

The following wines are some fabulous options for this time of year and also pair remarkably well with a variety of Summer cuisine, from seafood to BBQ! At our Museum event, we were fortunate to have joining us the talented Chef Martha Clemons, Owner of L’Hermitage Catering, who prepared a delicious dish to pair with each of our featured wines.

Wine #1 Bodega Don Olegario Albariño, Rias Baixas, Spain, 2012

Don Olegario is an artisanal winery founded in the 1950’s in the Rías Baixas region of northwest Spain. They are top producers of Albariño, the region’s signature white grape. Albariño is a late ripening, moderately cool to warm climate grape variety. Wine made from this grape is usually light, elegant and fresh with good acidity. It can also be quite aromatic, with peach, nectarine and floral aromas.
The grapes for this wine were hand harvested and underwent a cold maceration before fermenting in stainless steel vats at controlled temperatures. The wine then spent eight months on the lees to add texture and body before i was filtered and bottled.
The 2012 Don Olegario Albariño has opulent aromas of white flowers and flavors of citrus, golden apple and tropical fruit. The wine is ripe, fresh and full-bodied, with a long finish. In keeping with the saying, “if it grows together it goes together,” this wine, grown and cultivated in close proximity to the ocean, pairs deliciously well with seafood, especially shellfish, as well as poultry, rice dishes and soft cheeses. Chef Martha prepared a delicious Citrus Crab Salad to pair with this wine which synergized with the wine’s citrus notes and mouth watering acidity.
91 points, Wine Spectator ($18, Wine Atelier)

Wine #2 Halter Ranch Rosé, Paso Robles, California, 2012

Halter Ranch is a vineyard and winery located in the heart of Paso Robles, California which produces Bordeaux and Rhône-style wines.
The history of the Ranch dates to the 1880′s when it was part of a 3,600 acre holding owned by businessman Edwin Smith. In 1881, Smith built a grand Victorian farmhouse on the property and after the house burned down in 1885 he promptly rebuilt it and enjoyed 12 more years presiding over the land until his business failed and he was forced to sell. The ranch changed hands several times since Smith’s ownership and in June, 2000 Swiss born Hansjörg Wyss purchased 900 acres of the land, renovated Smith’s historic farmhouse, and began enlarging the vineyard to its present 280 acres.
The 2012 Halter Ranch Rosé is a blend of 68% Grenache, 15% Mourvèdre, 12% Picpoul Blanc, and 5% Syrah. The grapes are destemmed and lightly crushed, with 24 hours of skin contact. They are then pressed and fermented in stainless steel tanks where they are aged 3 months; there is no oak barrel aging. This wine has lovely aromatics of wild strawberries and watermelon, is refreshing and juicy on the palate, and finishes crisp and dry. It is very reminiscent of rosés from the Southern Rhône. Enjoy this wine alone as an apéritif or pair with charcuterie, grilled vegetables, or light pasta. Chef Martha prepared delicious Charcuterie with Manchego cheese and Roasted Asparagus to enjoy with the wine. ($15, Wine Atelier)

Wine #3: 3 Rings Shiraz, Barossa Valley, Australia, 2007

3 Rings was founded in 2004 and soon after it’s inception began earning 90+ ratings in the world wine media for its Shiraz and Reserve Shiraz from the Australia’s famed Barossa Valley. Kym Teusner, widely considered one of the rising stars of the Australian wine industry, is the brand’s winemaker.
The vineyards for 3 Rings Shiraz lie on an east-west slope with predominantly north-south rows, with an average age of the vines being 35 years. The soils are ancient and primarily clay over calcrete and slate bedrock, moving to more weathered slate at the bottom of an ancient glacier.
The 2007 3 Rings Shiraz is a full-bodied wine made from 100% Shiraz grapes with a deep red color and a garnet hue. It has aromas of black currants, ripe plum, mint and spice, while on the palate are notes of ripe plums, black cherries, dark chocolate and coffee. The fruity complexity is finished with a layered tannic structure that is balanced by a lovely acidity. This wine will pair well with the bigger flavors of Summer including BBQ, burgers and smoked meats. Chef Martha’s Stilton Sirloin Slider with Onion Jam was phenomenal with this Aussie Shiraz. 90 points, Wine Spectator ($16, Wine Atelier)

For more about Chef Martha Clemons and L’Hermitage Catering, please click here. All of the above mentioned Sultry Summer Sippers are available for purchase at The Wine Atelier; please click here to visit our wine boutique. I hope you can join us on Thursday, July 25th for the next installment of The Art of Wine & Food at the Museum of Art Ft. Lauderdale featuring “Everyday Wines: Learn the Secrets to Selecting the Best Wine Values from Around the Globe.” For more information or to purchase tickets please click here. Hope to see you there!