The weather is cooling down, but it's not quite fall yet. So what's a wine lover to do when picking out the perfect pairing for this transition period? Joe Bastianich shares his picks for wines that are light enough to go with late summer barbecue fare and still have the body, weight and intensity to go with hardier fall foods.
These two fine examples of wines bring us down to basics - both are classic white wines that are grown successfully all over the world. Both are delicate enough not to overpower bright summer salads, but have enough body and weight to pair well with slightly heavier foods as we move into fall.
- Antinori Bramito Del Cervo Chardonnay 2010 , Italy $18 - $20
- Domaine Martin Sancerre 2010, France $17-$20
Rose is a good crowd pleaser, it provides a little something for everyone. This particular wine from Tuscany is made primarily from sangiovese grapes. Served cool, it is still light enough for white wine drinkers, but being a rose of good body and structure can suffice the palate of those who traditionally prefer red. It's deep in color with a nice cherry flavor -- a "hefty rose".
- Castella Di Ama Rosato 2010, Italy $15
Here are two examples of excellent, but very different transitional reds to segue from summer foods to slightly heartier fare. Tempranillo is a classic old world red that's not fruit driven, and a little nervous. Merlot is what the American palate is more accustomed to -- more fruit forward, but not overly jammy. This particular merlot is extremely well balanced, and along with fruit has a nice dry mineral quality to it that you don't always get with merlot.
- Sierra Cantabria Riserva 2005 (Rioja), Spain $15
- Jaeger Relativity Merlot 2007, California $22 - $25