Barbecues, weddings, graduation parties, and those lazy, relaxing evenings after a busy day of holidaying: summer comes with many occasions for enjoying a glass of wine. Oz has handpicked a selection of wines perfect for those summer occasions, whether you prefer a thirst-quenching white, a fresh rosé or a mellow red.
White Burgundy, 2015
Vignerons de Buxy
France, £9.50, M&S
This is Burgundy. This is 100% Chardonnay. And if you’re thinking a) it’ll be too expensive, and b) it’ll be too oaky – think again. Buxy is a big co-operative which controls vast swathes of some of the chalkiest soil in Burgundy. The world’s best chardonnays come off chalk soils, and that’s where they grow these grapes. The wine is fabulously fresh, its ripe but lean green apple and pear skin fruit has just a lick of honey, and a marvellous tongue-drying seam of true chalk billowing through it.
Touraine Rosé, 2015
Joel Delauney, France
I know everyone is hoovering back gigantic bottles of Provence Rosé this summer. And I know they look wonderful. And they do contain significantly more swallows than an average bottle. I’m just not sure what they taste of. That’s not a problem with this spanking Rosé from France’s cool Loire Valley. It’s made by one of the Loire’s best Sauvignon Blanc producers, and he doesn’t go easy on the taste just because he’s making pink. This is wonderfully fresh and soft, with very dry fruit – but loads of it – backed up with some chewy red plum skin and a whiff of unsmoked tobacco leaf.
Errazuriz Coastal Series Pinot Noir, 2015
The Pinot Noir grape loves cool conditions, and most of Chile is frankly too warm. That definitely includes the Aconcagua Valley region north of Santiago, best known for its big beefy reds. But right down by the river’s mouth at the edge of the Pacific Ocean, it gets decidedly chilly, and suddenly Pinot Noir finds ideal conditions to flourish. This coastal red is beautifully mellow, it’s soft style suffused with the ripe fruit of fresh strawberries, just rubbed at the edges by some lemon zest and the warm scent of hillside herbs.
Sogrape Quinta de Azevedo 2015,
Vinho Verde, Portugal,
And, after Portugal’s Euro 2016 triumph – a splash of bone dry, austere, undemonstrative, prickly, non-starry and utterly thirst-quenching Vinho Verde from Quinta de Azevedo.