July 24, 2014

3 Summer Wines for Mom & Dad

South African Wines for Summer

This summer I’ve been thinking about expanding my writing to encompass wines. I frequently suggest pairing food with wine at each meal but never go more in the depth than that. This is mostly because my wine vocabulary is somewhat limited and I don’t want to sound dumb when I try to articulate what kind of wine I like and why. The best way to remedy this is to dive into the subject ready to learn as much as I can. I won’t become a wine writing genius overnight, or even in a year, but I’ve got to start somewhere. Today I’m going to begin with writing what I know, which is about three summer wines we’ve been enjoying at home lately.

Wines for Summer

I learned about these three wines at a recent wine dinner I attended showcasing South African vineyards. The actual winemakers from South Africa were there and discussed each wine in depth before we tasted it. It was the best way to learn! I wish I had that kind of tutelage every time I walked into a wine store. Of all the wines we tried three really stood out to me and we’ve been enjoying them at home. They’ve proven delightful when paired with food and even on their own. Also, their price points are manageable. This is good for me since sometimes it seems like the good wines don’t align with our budget. Ha!

DMZ Rose

I have always been a rosé fan and this DMZ Cabernet Rosé is my new favorite. It hails from the DeMorgenzon winery in the Stellenbosch region and has a bright red fruity flavor with delicate floral undertones.  This has been a real favorite for pairing with fish tacos fresh off the the grill and our Parmesan grilled asparagus. It is also fun for mom’s night out. (As an aside, I later tried the DMZ Chardonnay with the Tiffany blue label and think it is easily the best I’ve ever tasted. It wasn’t showcased at the dinner but you’d be smart to treat yourself when you find it!) Now I need this bag:

Yes Way Rose

The DeMorgenzon Chenin Blanc was my favorite discovery of the night. The intense minerality made is the most refreshing. It was slightly sweet, but not overly so. I tasted a lot of green apple and hints of warm spice. I also learned that it is aged in oak barrels which gives the flavor more dimension and adds notes of caramel and coffee. It is a welcome break from my go-to summer whites of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Chenin Blanc

I don’t usually drink a lot of red wine in the summer but this Glenelly Glass Collection Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 was excellent. Most of the time I find red wine too dense and overbearing in the heat, but this one was light enough to be enjoyable. It has notes of red fruit and dark chocolate and it doesn’t weigh down your palate and linger there for the rest of the night. We’ve enjoyed it with Steak with Chimichurri Amarillo and grilled vegetables and it’s been dynamite. If you are a diehard red wine fan, this is a great one for summer.

Glenelly

In case you are interested in some food pairing ideas and the rest of what we drank, here is the menu.

South African Wine Dinner

(FYI: This is not a sponsored post, I am just writing about three wines I’ve recently discovered and really like!)