10 Summer Wine Recs from Local Shops

Local wine purveyors Italian Cowboy, Lucy’s Snackbar and Island Wine weigh in on what you should have in your glass this summer.

Photo by Rachel Benavides

Local wine purveyors Italian Cowboy, Lucy’s Snackbar and Island Wine weigh in on what you should have in your glass this summer.

Italian Cowboy’s Summer Recs

Gaja Vistamare

From one of Italy’s preeminent wine families, Vistamare is the only white wine made at the Gajas’ coastal Tuscan estate. Meaning “View of the Sea,” it is summer in a glass, with floral aromas, notes of orchard fruit and coastal herbs and a complex, minerally finish. Perfect dockside.

Monsecco Gattinara

Who says you can’t enjoy red wine in the heat of the summer? Grown at the foot of the Italian Alps, this light-bodied, Nebbiolo-based wine smells and tastes very much like a Barolo, but with lighter red fruit (think cherries and plums) and loads of warm spice.

Contratto Metodo Classico Pas Dose 2015

An award-winning, classic method bubbly, it uses the same grapes and method as Champagne but is a fraction of the price. With no added dosage (sugar), it is crisp and complex out of the fridge and elegant and enchanting as it warms. Great for long summer nights.

Island Wine’s Summer Recs

Duchman Vermentino 2019

Hailing from Driftwood, Texas, Duchman Vermentino is widely recognized as one of the finest wines made in Texas. Grown in the High Plains by Bingham Family Vineyards, its flavor profile often garners comparisons to Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio. It’s bright and features a fresh acidity with soft notes of green apple and citrus fruits such as grapefruit and lime.

Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc

From Rutherford, California, Kim Crawford produces one of Marlborough’s benchmark Sauvignon Blancs and has been named in the Wine Spectator Top 100 four times. Aromas of lifted citrus, tropical fruit and crushed herbs make this a fresh, juicy wine with vibrant acidity and plenty of weight and length on the palate. Pairs brilliantly with fresh oysters, asparagus, lobster or summer salads.

Stags’ Leap Petite Sirah

The 2018 Petite Sirah exudes strong notes of blackberry, blueberry and black cherry fruits interwoven with more savory notes of black pepper and cocoa powder. On this palate, juicy flavors of creamy cassis, macerated blackberry, cherry kirsch, black licorice and peppery plum envelop the rich, saturated mouthfeel. This wine is smooth and silky with velvety tannins and a generous lengthy finish.

Lucy’s Snackbar’s Summer Recs

Chiaretto Ciaro 2020 Vini Sassara

From natural winemakers Alessia and Stefano Bertaiola, this still Rosato comes from the grape varieties Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara. The Bertaiolas’ first release comes from just outside Verona, in the Morainic Hills near Lake Garda. It is bright, elegant with notes of pomegranate, grapefruit, tangerine and wet stone; a taste of spring and color of summer.

Avaline Sparkling

Cameron Diaz’s natural wine group, Avaline, makes natural wines easy to understand. Her sparkling has become our go-to. Organic, sulfite- free and vegan. Macabeo, Xarel-lo and Parellada grapes make this bubbly dry and refreshing.

Frisant Rosato

Il Farneto Frisant Rosato is a rose natural wine made in the pet nat style from organic and biodynamic grapes grown in Emilia-Romagna, Italy. Frisant Rosato is made with the “Metodo Ancestrale” technique: spontaneous fermentation with native yeasts, unrefined, unfiltered and minimal added sulfites.

Wavy Wines California Wine Cooler Red 2020 BT

From Moon Mountain, California, Wavy’s Wine Cooler Red 2020 is a woody and herby sparkling red made from Barbera, Freisa, Merlot, Petite Syrah and Zinfandel grape varieties. It features fruit notes and great tannins, is organic, free of sulfur dioxide and made with native yeast.