• Shelley Boettcher

Five white wines for summer

Here are five fine white wines to drink now. And it goes without saying, but serve these wines chilled.

1. Montes Twins 2016 White Wine

(Aconcagua Coast, Chile)

A very quaffable blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Viogner, all wrapped up in a cute package that, yes, features twins on the label, drawn by renowned British (well, Welsh, to be specific) illustrator Ralph Steadman, whose work became particularly associated with gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson.

(Winemaking legend Aurelio Montes is a big fan of Steadman’s work and the two have apparently become friends.)

And the wine? It’s fragrant and floral, with pretty orange blossom and pineapple notes. Serve chilled by itself or as an aperitif, although it’ll stand just fine on its own with a variety of dishes: mild curries, salmon, chicken or mildly spiced pork dishes. About $15.

2. Sperling Vineyards 2016 Market White

(Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada)

This. Yes. A playful, pretty, retro-design-y label, and juice that makes you stand up and sing. (Especially if you drink the entire bottle yourself.)

Ann Sperling is one of Canada’s finest winemakers, and while all of her wines are worth seeking out, this uber-fresh off-dry white blend is one of those wines that everyone loves.

Positively teeming with floral, grapefruit and nectarine flavours and aromas, it will pair well with everything from sushi to chicken. It’ll knock the socks off everyone who complains about BC wines being too expensive, too. About $18.

3. Catena Zapata 2016 High Mountain Vines Chardonnay

(Mendoza, Argentina)

Easy to find. Reliable quality, vintage and vintage. Delicious to drink. And goes with almost everything. What are you waiting for? Get out and track down a bottle of this fine, full-bodied Chardonnay made from grapes grown in the Catena family’s “historic high-altitude vineyards.”

Lush tropical fruit notes — pineapple, guava — make this wine a winner, even when served without food, but it should pair nicely with roast chicken or a creamy pasta dish. About $20.

4. Dirty Laundry Vineyard 2016 Riesling

(Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada)

Riesling does very well in the Okanagan Valley, and Dirty Laundry’s 2016 example is tart and crispy, like a green apple with a hint of lemon and sugar on it. We finished the bottle with some spicy curry, and it was mighty nice, but it’d go beautifully with tuna tacos or pork and applesauce, too. About $28.

5. Tinhorn Creek Vineyards 2015 Oldfield Reserve Chardonnay

(Golden Mile Bench, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada)

Time in French oak gives this lush Chardonnay plenty of richness and flavour: flowers, lime, honey, peach and tropical fruit notes.

Tinhorn Creek, of course, was sold in 2017 to Andrew Peller Ltd., a $95 million deal that included Gray Monk Estate Winery and Black Hills Estate Winery, too. Let’s hope the quality stays the same or gets even better. About $35.

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