Summertime Wines: Fresh & Acidic
Whether you believe in climate change or not, it’s summer time in Louisiana.
News flash: it’s hot. I’ve seen innovative and we’ll call them “extremely original” ways to stay cool. I prefer the traditional oenophile methodology versus the strictly beer diet. Summertime wines.
If you’ve ever read an article I’ve written for SB Magazine or my blog Beard & Barrel, you know that I love rosé wines. Honestly it’s time for my annual rosé push so here it is: Malene Rosé is my choice for the swelteringly hot months if you are okay with drinking pink. It’s under $20 and over delivers. It’s only in its third year of production and each year they’ve had to increase because it keeps selling out. It’s produced by the Crimson Wine group who are the good people that bring you the standard setting wines of Seghesio Family Vineyards, Pine Ridge Vineyards and Archery Summit (just to name a few).
Coming to us all the way from California, it’s made in the classic Provençal style and is truly impressive. It drinks very fresh with light notes of strawberry, watermelon rind and flirts with pomegranate flavors without being obvious. Being dry, having a slight flintiness and massive minerality are the tip of the hat to that Provençal style. Definitely a great wine to party with an inflatable pool in the backyard or an elegant pairing with a light salad or a smoked salmon.
Now if you aren’t into the idea of a rosé wine, I have an alternative for you. Sauvignon Blanc is a great summertime wine that is crisp and high in acid. High acid is great for hot weather because it’s more refreshing and lighter so it won’t be as heavy as a buttery Chardonnay. Domaine De La Motte Sauvignon Blanc is my pick. It comes from Languedoc, France and is pretty traditional for the region. There are a lot of citrus fruits like grapefruit, lemon zest, lime and bergamot.
The acidity, like I mentioned before, is super high here. It makes for a very refreshing glass of wine. Kind of similar to how lemonade is refreshing when it’s hot. Above all else that makes it perfect for hot weather is that it is dry. Dry is great in these scenarios because that usually leans towards a lighter wine. Heavy wines can be a little much when it’s hot out. Kind of like eating a beef stew outside when it’s 90 degrees. Try Domaine De La Motte with a cheese plate, chicken shish kabobs or a fruit plate.
Everyone has their own idea of what these wines are stereotypically like. Most people assume rosé wines are sweet because they think sugary White Zinfandel when they see the pink color. Actually, the color in rosé wines comes directly from the grape’s juice to skin contact. All the pigments for the wine are in the grape skin. With Sauvignon Blanc, most are very familiar with the overly grapefruity, bell peppery flavors of New Zealand. They’ve really carved out a niche for their Sauvignon Blanc. A lot of countries produce Sauvignon Blancs that are drastically different than the New Zealand style. That is the beauty of the wine world; each region has a specific style and is widely separate from the next.
Judd Smith is a local wine enthusiast who also works as Cadre Hospitality Group’s beverage director. To read more from Smith, check out his blog at www.BeardandBarrelBlog.com.