Today is National Wine Day, and we’ve asked Laura Maniec, master sommelier and owner of Corkbuzz Wine Bars, to weigh in on the biggest wine trends of the season. Here’s what Maniec will be serving to her friends at her new Shelter Island home this summer.
Chillable Light Reds
“When the temperature heats up outside, the serving temperature of your wine should cool down,” says Maniec, who’s based in New York.
“Typically, Cabernet Sauvignon and other big reds are served at 65 degrees. I recommend that in summer you drink lighter reds and serve them slightly colder, at roughly 55-58 degrees. The easiest way to get that temperature is to put your them in an ice water bucket. Grapes like Pinot Noir, Barbera, Frappato, Friesa, Ploussard and Trousseau are all good for chilling.”
Chic Boxed Wine
“Alternative ways to package wine are very popular these days; wine comes in bottles, boxes, cans (Porch Pounders are very popular) and tetra packs (adult juice boxes anyone?),” says Maniec.
“There is a time and place for these types of packages, and I especially find a good box of wine to be useful at the beach or at a house party. You can keep the box in a cooler or the fridge, and your guests can help themselves to the portion that they want over a long weekend. It is nice because the wine stays fresh in the bag inside the box, and you don’t have any glass to recycle or need for a corkscrew.”
Keg wine or wine on draft has been popular for a while in restaurants but did you know you could get a keg for your next backyard party?
“They are great for weddings or graduation parties, and you don’t have to throw away all those bottles,” suggests Maniec. “For the same reason that box wine keeps the oxygen out and the wine fresh, so do kegs. Try Bridge Lane Wine’s offerings which come in 19.5 liter vessels (that’s enough for 130 glasses). They deliver, and the kegs are 100 percent recycled, made of heavy duty plastic so there is no keg deposit or return.”
Bridge Lane Kegs, $240
“Some white wine can have a tiny little sparkle or effervescence,” says Maniec. “These little bubbles are a result of fermentation and indicate that the white wine is fresh and young. Wine from regions like Getaria in Spain, Vinho Verde in Portugal and Wachau in Austria all produce un-oaked, light, refreshing whites that can exhibit these bubbles.”
It’s a perfect tweener between a sparkling wine and a white wine that pairs perfectly with grilled seafood and warm weather.
Ramona Wine Coolers
Ramona Wine Coolers is the brainchild of Momofuku wine director and owner of Bellus Wines Jordan Salcito. She’s just launched a hipster line of wine coolers under the Ramona label (not to be confused with Ramona Singer’s Pinot Grigio.).
“These are perfect for summer poolside parties,” says Maniec. “They are made with organically-grown grapes from Sicily and all-natural flavors.”
They are available at select stores in New York, New Jersey, California, Oklahoma, and Texas.