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bars ¦ drink
f wine is your drink of choice at a barbecue,
you're in luck, as there are plenty of styles
that make a happy match with food from
the grill. In general, wines from warm
climates - such as Australia, California,
South Africa, Chile or the Mediterranean -
are a good place to start. Grapes ripen more
easily in the sunshine, making fruitier wines
with enough avour to stand up to big,
bold, barbecued food.
From here, think about ingredients.
Barbecues usually involve a pick 'n' mix of
salads, meat, sh or veg - and one wine that
works across the board is rosé. Most pinks
are versatile enough to match both meaty
burgers or sausages and lighter grilled sh or
veggie skewers. But avoid the delicate pale
pink styles and choose something more
robust. Head to Spain's Navarra and look for
the Garnacha grape, which makes punchy,
dry rosés that t the bill.
If you're a die-hard meat lover, it's time to
bring on the reds. The smoky, charred note
of barbecued beef means you can dial up
the avour gauge and go for a full-on beast
such as Australian Shiraz, with its spicy black
pepper notes. The same grape is called Syrah
in France and examples from the Rhône
Valley have a smoky bacon note along with
that peppery spice - perfect for burgers
loaded with bacon and cheese.
At this point it's worth chilling out. No, not
you - your reds. The one thing that shouldn't
be heated up at your BBQ is wine, so if the
sun's out ll one bucket with ice for your
whites and rosés and another with cold water
for your reds, keeping them at around 18˚C
to help retain their freshness (for more on
this and suggestions of lighter red styles,
see our feature on chilled reds on p.138).
When it comes to whites, Chardonnay
shines at a barbecue, both as a good
all-rounder and as a match for chicken.
Good-value examples from Chile have
some natural fruit sweetness as a foil for
the charring, and a touch of oak to stand
up to the sweet BBQ sauce.
And while we're on the subject, do
consider the marinades or sauces you've
used as these have a big impact on taste.
In the red camp, Zinfandel from California
is a match made in heaven when it comes
to anything smothered in BBQ sauce and
chilli-based marinades, while South African
Pinotage pairs well with smoky sauces.
Marinades based on lemon juice, herbs or
olive oil are better with crisp whites such as
Sauvignon Blanc or unoaked Chardonnay.
FRUIT OF THE VINE
La Sabrosita Rosado 2012,
£8, Marks Spencer
This crowd-pleasing dry rosé is loaded
with summery cherry fruit and livened
up with a lick of spice. Fresh acidity
means it's great with seafood: think
juicy grilled prawns.
MontGras Reserva Chardonnay 2013,
Colchagua Valley, Chile
Add a totally tropical taste to your
barbie with the pineapple and peach
notes in this Chardonnay. A crisp
cedar note cuts through fatty meats
and sweet BBQ sauces.
McGuigan BIN 736 Shiraz Viognier
2013, South Eastern Australia
A dash of Viognier adds freshness to
the ripe, smooth Shiraz fruit, making
this Aussie a reliable choice with any
barbecued meats, from steaks to