Patio Party Pleasers!

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This time of year as I walk my favorite wine seekers around the department showing them the newest and latest in the wine world, I start to get the sideways look and comment, “Maybe some whites?”  Everyone is more than ready for the weather to break, roll out the patio furniture, sit back and enjoy the summer with their favorite cooling and refreshing white wines. Here are some of my favorites!

New Age White Blend, Mendoza, Argentina $8.99 –

A definite summer favorite, the New Age is a blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Muscat.  The Muscat gives the wine a touch of sweetness while the Sauvignon Blanc keeps it bright and refreshing.  The wine maker for New Age recommends serving the wine with a splash of lemon, lime, and club soda for a refreshing spritzer!

Mezza Corona Pinot Grigio 2009, Vignetti Delle Dolomiti, Italy $8.99 –

This is one of my “go to” Pinot Grigios.  On the nose: kiwi, lime, and green apple that all follows through on the palate. A cleansing finish lends itself to summer picnic salads like our new Creamy Gemelli Pasta Salad.

St. Kilda Chardonnay South Eastern, Australia $9.99 –

Last year Wine Spectator gave St. Kilda Best Value for its 2009 Chardonnay and I couldn’t agree more.  On the fruity side of Chardonnay, this Aussie is ripe with peach, apple, melon, a great pairing for fried chicken.

Three Pears Pinot Gris 2010, California $10.99 –

The folks at Mason Cellars brought us Pomelo Sauvignon Blanc, and on the coattails of that success have ventured out to make a new Pinot Gris called Three Pears.  Now if you have never had Pinot Gris, this is a very nice one, but not necessarily classic.  Many Pinot Gris do have Pear nuances, but this takes it to a new level. Bartlett Pears jump from the glass while on the palate; there is a juicy quality with nice minerality.

Elizabeth Spencer Sauvignon Blanc 2009, Mendicino California $17.99 –

I have been blown away by the layering, complexity, and affordability of the Elizabeth Spencer Wines.  I have tasted the Cabernet Sauvignon ($34.99) and now the Sauvignon Blanc and would put them up against any wine that sold twenty dollars more. This wine has the grapefruit that you might expect from Sauv Blanc, but it is a lighter and sweeter ruby red Grapefruit flavor than the archetypical New Zealand, with their “kick you in the teeth” acidity. Smells of summer like apple blossom, fresh cut grass and citrus on the nose with white peaches, nectarines and just a hint of slate on the finish, this wine is a showstopper.

So this summer, keep cool with these refreshing food-friendly crowd pleasers!

Enjoy!

– Jennifer Laurie