Wines and the grill

Local experts offer tips for choosing the right wines for your Fourth of July cookout

For some, enjoying barbecue with a glass of their favorite wine is the way to go.

The Associated Press/File
Published: Wednesday, July 3, 2013 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, July 1, 2013 at 5:49 p.m.

Break out the grills and checkered tablecloths, and get ready to celebrate Independence Day.

A large part of the Fourth of July celebration revolves around food, including the traditional steaming hot dogs and hamburgers washed down with cold beers. But for some, enjoying barbecue with a glass of their favorite wine is the way to go.

When pairing wines with barbecue, most people like dry, red wines, said Russ Welker, natural foods manager and wine buyer for Ward's Supermarket on Northwest 23rd Avenue.

“They're looking for something that is complementary, that goes well and is enjoyable to the palate,” Welker said.

This Fourth of July, serve up a classy meal with the help of the following suggestions from local spirits stores.

ABC Fine Wine & Spirits

6612 W. Newberry Road

Daniel Eddy, wine consultant

“I generally try and incorporate a flavor of the meal that I think or I perceive is in the wine,” Eddy said. “You don't want to match every flavor.”

■ Seven Sinners petite sirah from California, 2010: An old vine that is peppery and spicy. ($16.99)

■ Shannon Ridge red zinfandel from Lake County in California, 2010: Big, ripe flavors with a smoky finish. ($24.99)

Dorn's Liquors & Wine Warehouse

4140 NW 16th Blvd.

Randall Gersdorf, food manager

“Generally speaking, when it comes to pairing with barbecue,” Gersdorf said, “I think it's best to avoid wines that are too oaky.”

■ The Beach House shiraz blend from South Africa, 2011: Smooth with notes of raspberries and cherries. ($7.99)

■ Pillar Box Red shiraz blend from southern Australia, 2009: A smooth, fruit-forward red with a youthful acidity. ($10.99)

The Wine and Cheese Gallery

113 N. Main St.

Wade Tyler, co-owner

“Less sweet wines marry better with most food items,” Tyler said. “Ultimately, the important factor is for one to not dominate the other.”

■ Acrobat pinot gris from King Estate Wineries in Oregon, 2012: Refreshing, citrus-like qualities. ($12.99)

■ Gundlach Bundschu merlot from Sonoma Valley in California, 2010: Fruit flavors, complex and “just darn tasty.” ($26)

Tipple's Brews

2440 SW 76th St., Suite 110

Matthew Feagin, co-owner

“Be cautious of some foods because their chemical compounds can affect the way you taste and perceive wine,” Feagin said in an email.

■ Ramey Sonoma Coast syrah from California: Bursting with layers of fruit and savory herbs and smoke. ($30)

■ Belle Glos Meiomi pinot noir from California: Flavors of mocha oak and hints of wild berry, raspberry, cola, vanilla and spice. ($20)

Uppercrust Productions

4118 NW 16th Blvd.

Jackie Dufty, owner

“These three wines are killer wines,” Dufty said. “Everyone loves these wines.”

■ Mazzocco red zinfandel from Sonoma County in California, 2010: Robust with flavors of black cherry, plum and spice. ($27)

■ Handley chardonnay from Anderson Valley in California, 2010: Well-balanced; not too fruity, not too dry and not too lean or acidic. ($22)

■ Cannonball merlot from Sonoma County in California, 2010: Flavors of dark berries, mocha and cherry pie, hints of vanilla and spice and finishes smooth. ($18)

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