Will summer ever come?

On a rainy, dreary, March Seattle day, all I can think about is spring and summer. I live for Seattle summers. I can’t think of a more beautiful place then Seattle in August (ok, honestly there are some pretty amazing places other than Seattle). But to get to summer, we must have spring. Spring is always hit or miss around here. Often it is drizzly and overcast, with a few sun breaks intermittently. On some occasions, we can hit a beautiful and sunny spring day. It is amazing what a little sun and the thought of summer around the corner, will do for Seattleites. When the sun is out, we tend to have bounce in our step, a slight smile on our face and tolerance for other’s. We may even strike up a conversation at the bus stop – well maybe not, that is just wishful thinking. But when it is spring time and the cherry blossoms are in bloom, the sun is out and my husbands sinus’ are swelling up around his face (due to spring allergies) all I can do is think about is sitting outside with a nice glass of crisp white wine, chatting it up with my friends and watching our kiddo’s run through the sprinklers. My imagination runs ramped about how fabulous the summer is going to be.

As I sit here, listening to the rain pelt my house, heater on to 70 degree’s and about 5 layers of clothes on me…. I can’t help but smile at the thought of spring and summer around the corner. Which leads me thinking about some of the best summer wines. First, I want to add something though. It is a total myth that you can only drink white wines in summer and reds in the cooler months. You can enjoy any wine during any time of the year. However, a lot of the summer/BBQ foods pair well with white wines (some red’s too) – which is how that myth developed.

Here is my list of wines to look for (I am just doing varietals not producers). These wines tend to unite very well with salads, cold pasta’s, seafood and BBQ fare.  There will be some red added into this list – for a more diverse selection.

BBQ foods (BBQ meats with smoky and/or sweet sauce)

Beer (not wine, but beers pair very well with BBQ)

Beaujolais

Shiraz – Australian

Rose/Rosado – dry

Rose Champagne

California Zinfandel

German Riesling

Salads

Beaujolais

dry Riesling

Rose

Sauvignon Blanc

Vinho Verde

Chardonnay (pair best with Ceaser Salads)

Pinot Grigio

Champagne

Seafood

Riesling especially dry

Sauvignon Blanc

Champagne

Chardonnay (boiled or grilled)

Viognier (try with shellfish… yum!)

Pinot Grigio/Pinot Gris

Fresh Fruit and Desserts

Champagne – rose’ and or sweet

Moscato d’ Asti

Gewurztraminer – dry

Riesling – off dry or sweet

Sparking wine

Late Harvest (with a fruit dessert)

Port (with berry, fruit or richer dessert)

Vin Santo (with almond, Hazelnut desserts)

Cabernet Sauvignon (with bittersweet chocolate)

This is a quick and easy list for summer food pairings. If you want a more in-depth resource, check out What to Drink with What you Eat by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page.

Tonight’s Tasting:

Buty Winery , Semillon, Sauvignon and Muscadelle  – Walla Walla, WA ($25.00 West Seattle Cellars)

Buty Semillon, Sauvignon and Muscadelle 2009Talk about getting ready for summer. If you want something to put you in the mood for hot summer nights, this wine will take you there. With a floral scent – it hits you with a bright, clean, crisp taste. We paired this wine with Mahi Mahi burgers and it matched nicely. This wine can easily be found in most wine shops. Buty is a wine you can either drink now, to prepare you for summer. Or to wow your friends during a big July Seafood bash.

Well, the rain has stopped and I see a sliver of sun. Which is my sliver of hope that spring is around the corner. And with that, so is summer.

Cheers my friends! And remember friends don’t let friends put ice cubes in their wine.

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