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:
Mionetto 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 to 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!
Kim 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 discover 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.
Ravoire & 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 juicy 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.
With the Holiday Season approaching and entertaining schedules about to kick into high gear, it’s prime time to perfect your wine and cheese pairing prowess! Creamy, comforting and delicious, cheese is synonymous with the Fall and Winter months, and wine can arguably be the perfect accompaniment. But what wine to serve with that wedge of triple cream Brie, charming Cheddar,... Read More
The post Homage to Fromage: 3 Key Wine & Cheese Pairing Principles! appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.
With the Holiday Season approaching and entertaining schedules about to kick into high gear, it’s prime time to perfect your wine and cheese pairing prowess! Creamy, comforting and delicious, cheese is synonymous with the Fall and Winter months, and wine can arguably be the perfect accompaniment. But what wine to serve with that wedge of triple cream Brie, charming Cheddar, or fragrant Epoisses? Here are a few basic tips for creating the perfect duo.
Principle #1: Pair wines and cheeses with similar flavor profiles: The same principle that works for food and wine also works for wine and cheese. If you enjoy particular flavors in a cheese, opt for a wine that mirrors those delicious qualities. For instance, a tangy, acidic fresh goat cheese would be well matched with a zesty, citrusy Sauvignon Blanc. Similar flavors create this fabulous flavor synergy! In addition to fresh goat cheese with Sauvignon Blanc, other examples of this principle include Camembert or Brie with Chardonnay, aged sheep’s milk cheese with sherry, and Emmentaler with Merlot.
Try the 2014 Paul Cluver Sauvignon Blanc ($14) from South Africa paired with fresh goat’s milk Fromage Blanc
Principle #2: Pair the texture and weight of wine and cheese: The texture of a cheese is an important window into its flavor and can aid in finding a great wine to match it. For instance, if a cheese is creamy and viscous, like Brie, you would want to match it with a wine with similar qualities, say a creamy, buttery Chardonnay. Or, if you’re in the mood for a semi-hard cheese like cheddar, a medium-bodied Zinfandel would probably work best. Some classic examples of this principle include Manchego and Rioja, Gruyère and Gewürztraminer and washed-rind cheese and Cabernet Franc.
Try the 2010 Cune Rioja Crianza ($14) from Spain paired with a nutty Manchego cheese
Principle #3: Pair wines and cheeses with opposite flavors: This may appear contrary to the first pairing tip, however, if you are a fan of sweet and salty or sweet and savory flavors together, this might be the principle for you! Choosing opposing flavors in wine and cheese can make for some delicious flavor combinations. If you have a salty cheese, then it will generally pair well with a sweet wine – as long as the saltiness and sweetness are in balance. Classic “opposite” cheese and wine pairings include Roquefort and Sauternes and Stilton and Port.
Try the 2013 Anne Amie Cuvée A Müller-Thurgau ($16) from Oregon’s Yamhill-Carlton district paired with an aged blue cheese
While these pairing principles can serve as a guide for establishing some wonderful wine and cheese pairings, the best practice is to experiment and discover what truly pleases your palate! What are some of your favorite wine and cheese pairings?
The post Homage to Fromage: 3 Key Wine & Cheese Pairing Principles! appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.
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:
Limited 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 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”!
Banfi 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.
Cune 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.
Sartori 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!