You’ll miss the hot days, the long beach walks and the distinct aroma of the holiday season; but no need to pine for the crisp beverages of summer just yet. There is still time for cold Riesling, chilled rosé, and a generally lighter pallet of flavours before the cooler weather sets in. Before reaching for your usual, let’s take a look at the best, the brightest and the most delicious wines to match long, warm days and fresh food.
Bubbles to begin
There is no doubt that as the temperature soars, the body aches for something refreshing, and the addition of bubbles in a drink can heighten its ability to quench one’s thirst. It demands a more audible "ahhh" as the bubbles prickle and the cool wine goes down.
Prosecco is still incredibly popular and for good reason. These fruit-forward bubbles are perfect for the casual lunch or to toast the bride and groom. Brown Brothers Prosecco is one of the local standouts, and if you are drawn to make comparison with the Old World, then the golden packaging of the Sensi 18K Gold Prosecco from Italy will be just the right amount of bling as you eat prosciutto-wrapped rock melon in the park.
Dry it out
For those who have braved the Chardonnay waters of late, you’ll know just how good this grape is again. From the entry level to the super-premium, Chardonnay is the great white hope and one that the wine world is taking keen interest in. For that midweek quaffer, it’s hard to go past the Rosemount Meal Matcher Chardonnay. With helpful tasting notes and, importantly, meal-matching suggestions all over the bottle, you’ll make no mistake with your roast chicken salad by the poolside.
As the evening descends and you want something more intense with your barbecued snags, pop a bottle of La Linea Tempranillo from the Adelaide Hills in the fridge for 30 minutes. The slight drop in temperature will reward you with a wine of beauty, ripe fruit expression without being jammy, and beautiful structure. These Spanish-inspired wines are something that will soon take over the dining rooms of Australia - not just because they taste terrific, but the vines also do well in our warm climate. Of all the Tempranillo in Australia, this would be in anyone’s top 5. A terrific example of how good Australian Tempranillo can be.
Barossa at its best
As the mosquitoes start to bite and you move indoors, you’ll likely find room for another taste of something delicious. Many will have heard of the big fruit and big-ticket wines of Torbreck from the Barossa Valley. They are fast becoming an Australian icon in the ultra-premium league, yet they make a host of labels across the price spectrum. Their Cuvee Juveniles is an unwooded Grenache Shiraz Mataro designed for the Juveniles wine bar in Paris. This young and bright wine is the epitome of the Barossan sun, showing licorice and raspberry and a host of other super ripe fruits. It too will show beautifully with a few minutes in the fridge, as the cooler temperature will bring the texture into greater focus and reward your taste buds. You don’t need to make the wine cold like white wine, but just note that in summer, room temperature is often too warm for reds.
A final sip
No doubt someone in your family watches far too many cooking shows and has by now perfected the classic Panna Cotta. With this simple dessert, take one last sip of the Montevecchio Moscato. This fun and fizzy sweet wine will put a smile on your face and let you reminisce about the summer that was, and leave you in sparkling form to plan for the autumn ahead.