Ready, Set, Toss! Wines to Serve with Summer Salads

Ready, Set, Toss! Wines to Serve with Summer Salads

51160630It’s that time of year again—the salad days of summer, when the best way to beat the heat is with a cool, crisp salad. Here are a few ideas for something summery to sip alongside.

For a crisp, green salad with a vinaigrette dressing, you can’t beat sauvignon blanc. But if there are weightier ingredients in the salad—as in a Greek Salad, for example—go for slightly weightier pinot gris/pinot grigio. A few favorites:
CLOS DU VAL Sauvignon Blanc 2012 (Napa Valley, CA) $24
SCHUG Sauvignon Blanc 2013 (Sonoma Coast, CA) $20
J VINEYARDS Pinot Gris 2013 (California) $16

For heavier green salads, with even weightier ingredients or a creamy dressings—like a Grilled Chicken Caesar or Nicoise—try a crisper style chardonnay:
CAVE DE LUGNY Les Charmes Chardonnay 2012 (Burgundy, France) $14
CUVAISON ‘Estate Grown’ Chardonnay 2012 (Carneros, Napa Valley, CA) $25
KENDALL-JACKSON ‘Avant’ Chardonnay 2012 (California) $17

A pasta salad lacks the crisp crunch of a green salad, but is still relatively light because it’s cold and refreshing. Toppings—from Pesto Pasta to a Mediterranean-style Pasta to Pasta Salad with Shrimp—can be all over the map, so pick a middle-of-the-road white wine that’ll go with all kinds of ingredients.
SEGHESIO Pinot Grigio 2012 (Russian River Valley, Sonoma County, CA) $22
CHATEAU STE. MICHELLE Pinot Gris 2013 (Columbia Valley, WA) $15
MÉNAGE À TROIS Pinot Grigio 2013 (California) $12

Adding summer fruits to your salad? Whether it’s Spinach with Chicken and Strawberries or Melon, Arugula, and Serrano Ham, you’ll need some sweetness in your wine to account for the sweetness in the food. Try something off-dry:
J. LOHR VINEYARDS ‘Bay Mist’ White Riesling 2012 (Monterey County, CA) $10
LUCIEN ALBRECHT ‘Reserve’ Gewurztraminer 2012 (Alsace, France) $17
CK MONDAVI ‘Willow Springs’ White Zinfandel 2013 (California) $7

How about a simply delicious Summer Fruit Salad for dessert? Pair it with a similarly sweet, fruity, and refreshing dessert wine:
COPPO MONCALVINA Moscato d’Asti 2012 (Italy) $17
14 HANDS WINERY Moscato 2012 (Columbia Valley, WA) $10
FERRANTE ‘Vidal Blanc’ Ice Wine 2013 (Grand River Valley, OH) $30 (375 mL)

Which salads are you most looking forward to this summer? Share with us below.

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