May 30, 2024 by

Top 10 Red and White Wine Pairings for Your Summer Barbecue

Summer is the perfect time for outdoor gatherings, and what better way to elevate your barbecue than with the perfect wine pairings? Whether you’re grilling up succulent steaks, juicy burgers, or fresh seafood, there’s a wine that can complement and enhance the flavors of your favorite dishes. Here’s a guide to the top 10 red and white wine pairings that will make your summer barbecue unforgettable.

1. Sauvignon Blanc with Fresh Fish: Sauvignon Blanc, with its crisp acidity and citrus notes, is a fantastic match for grilled and fresh fish. The wine’s bright flavors cut through the richness of the fish, while its herbal undertones complement any marinades or seasonings.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

Sea Bass Acquapazza

2021 Herd & Hart Western Cape Sauvignon Blanc – $20
Tasting Notes: Tart lemon, green apple, kiwi, wet rock, sea breeze, fresh herbs

2022 Par Fore the Course New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc – $20
Tasting Notes: Gooseberry, guava, passionfruit, melon, bell pepper, fresh herbs, grass

2021 Cherrier Frères Sancerre Blanc ‘Les Renarderies’ (half-bottle) – $22
Tasting Notes: Lemongrass, tart green apple, gooseberry, guava, lime zest, squash blossom, flint

2. Chardonnay and Chablis with Savory or Grilled Chicken: Opt for a lightly oaked Chardonnay or a crisp and lively Chablis to pair with your savory or grilled chicken. The crisp and refreshing texture of this grape variety that features hints of vanilla and tropical fruit enhance the smoky, savory flavors of the chicken, especially if it’s marinated in herbs and garlic.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

Chicken Milanese

Margaux’s Chicken Provençal

2020 No Name Santa Barbara County Chardonnay – $30
Tasting Notes: Yellow apple, pear, lemon zest, wet stone, baking spices, coconut, vanilla

2020 Evening Land Salem Wine Company Chardonnay – $30
Tasting Notes: Meyer lemon, orchard fruit, white flowers, gunflint, sweet spice, toasted almond skin

2022 Domaine De Oliveira Lecestre AC Chablis – $38
Tasting Notes: Lemon, ripe grapefruit, citrus rind, white flower, pine nut, chalky minerality

3. Rosé with Grilled Vegetables: A dry Rosé is versatile and refreshing, making it ideal for a variety of grilled vegetables. Its bright acidity and fruity notes balance the charred, earthy flavors of vegetables like bell peppers, zucchini, and eggplant.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

Grilled Summer Vegetables

2022 Chateau Barbebelle Coteaux d’Aix en Provence ‘Fleurie’ Rosé – $23
Tasting Notes: Lavender, sage, blood orange, wild strawberries, ruby pink grapefruit, white peach, rose water

2022 Chateau Barbebelle Aix-en-Provence ‘Cuvée Madeleine’ Rosé – $25
Tasting Notes: Rose water, geranium, strawberry, raspberry, grapefruit, minerals

4. Pinot Grigio with Grilled Fish: For delicate, flaky grilled fish such as tilapia, halibut or sea bass, Pinot Grigio is a top choice. Its light body and zesty citrus flavors highlight the freshness of the fish without overwhelming it.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

Citrus + Saffron Poached Halibut

2023 Dönnhoff Weissburgunder Trocken – $35
Tasting Notes: Green apple, pear, pineapple, green hazelnut shell, apple blossoms, sage

5. Riesling with Spicy Cuisine: The sweetness and acidity of Riesling complement spicy dishes, such as Thai or Indian cuisine. Its fruitiness balances the heat, making it a refreshing choice for spicy curries and stir-fries.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

Crispy Rice Salad

2022 Dr. Burklin-Wolf Estate Dry Riesling ‘Trocken’ – $27
Tasting Notes: Green apple, meyer lemon, pear, lime, lime blossom, jasmine, fine minerality

6. Pinot Noir with Savory Salmon: Pinot Noir’s light body and bright red fruit flavors pair beautifully with the rich, fatty profile of savory salmon. Its subtle earthiness also complements any herb rubs or bold flavors.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

Sesame Salmon and Herb Salad with Japanese Sweet Potatoes

2021 Piro Points West Santa Maria Valley Pinot Noir – $34
Tasting Notes: Strawberry preserves, cherry, blood orange, rosewood shavings, tobacco, pencil lead

7. Rioja with Smoky Carnitas: The bold, fruity undertones of Rioja, with its hints of red berries, vanilla, and spice, complement the tender, smoky pork carnitas perfectly. This pairing enhances the savory depth of the carnitas, while the wine’s acidity and tannins balance the richness of the meat, creating a harmonious and flavorful experience.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

Smoky Sweet Carnitas

2021 Anza Diego Magaña Rioja – $38
Tasting Notes: Cherry, pomegranate, fig, cigar box, leather, dried earth, herbs

8. Carbonic Malbec with Smash Burgers: Argentinian Carbonic Malbec offers dark fruit flavors and a smooth, velvety texture that complements the juicy, flavorful nature of smash burgers. Its moderate tannins and spicy finish make it a harmonious pairing.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

Summer BBQ Series: Smash Burgers w/ Grilled Veggies

2020 Gouchas Luján de Cuyo Carbonic Malbec – $22
Tasting Notes: Blueberry, black cherry, cranberry ocean spray, cocoa, leather, cigar box

9. Cabernet Sauvignon with Steak: A classic pairing for a reason, Cabernet Sauvignon’s full body, firm tannins, and notes of dark fruit and oak are perfect for a well-grilled steak. The wine’s structure complements the meat’s richness and smoky char.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

2021 Wonderland Project No. 9 Atlas Peak Cabernet Sauvignon – $55
Tasting Notes: Black cherry, cassis, violet, mint, bay leaf, sweet tobacco, mocha, cedar

10. Cahors Malbec with Barbecue Ribs: French Malbec, with its deep purple color and flavors of blackberry, plum, and mocha, pairs exceptionally well with barbecue ribs. The wine’s robust profile enhances the sweet and tangy flavors of the barbecue sauce, making each bite and sip a delightful experience.

Argaux Test Kitchen Favorites and Wine Pairings:

2020 Chateau du Cèdre Cahors Malbec – $35
Tasting Notes: Black plum, blackberry, prune, tobacco, pepper, mint, savory undertones

Looking for more food and wine pairings for your summer gathering, check out our latest posts:

7 Sommelier-Approved Rosé Wine Pairings

Best Wine for Seafood

Looking for more inspiration email or call (949) 438-7228 for more wine pairing assistance from our team of sommeliers!

Shopping Cart
Save & Share Cart
Your Shopping Cart will be saved and you'll be given a link. You, or anyone with the link, can use it to retrieve your Cart at any time.
Back Save & Share Cart
Your Shopping Cart will be saved with Product pictures and information, and Cart Totals. Then send it to yourself, or a friend, with a link to retrieve it at any time.
Your cart email sent successfully :)