Between wildfires, social injustice, fake news, mean tweets, and a global pandemic, 2020 has been a year most of us would like to forget. This being said, we’re still able to enjoy a great glass of wine, and now, we’re encouraged to do so even more so outdoors. Here are our favorite wines to celebrate Mother Nature with National Red Wine Day, Labor Day, the end of summer, and frankly just because you seriously deserve to upgrade what’s in that glass. We’ll cheers to that!
A blend of five Bordeaux-heritage grape varietials, which together contribute multi-layered flavors and complexity. Cabernet Sauvignon imparts a generous core of tart blackberry, deep cassis, and blueberry jam, while the Merlot brings a vibrant, riper dark cherry fruit character. Malbec contributes dark plum and briary blackberry notes, while the Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot complete the red blend with delicate floral aromas and flavors of violet and earthy sage. Warm baking spice notes of cinnamon and clove linger on the finish. This is a big, bold wine, and a ‘can’t miss’ for any season.
Beaulieu’s winery is also currently offering free weekly live virtual tasting experiences via Instagram at @bvwines. Corresponding wines/tasting kits for each virtual tasting can be purchased in advance.
Cakebread Cellars Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 (SRP: $76.99)
This is your summer celebration red wine, without a doubt! It showcases attractive fruit aromas of ripe boysenberry, dark cherry and cassis, coupled with scents of sweet oak and herbal spice, introduce plush, deeply concentrated, black fruit flavors bolstered by bright acidity and well-structured tannins. This classic Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon boasts a long, lovely finish featuring savory fruit, spice and mineral tones.
The perfect wine for late night star-gazing, grilling, or just relaxing outdoors, this wine has aromas of sweet black cherry, raspberry, rose petal and violet carry over onto a fresh palate of raspberry and flavors. Round, silky tannins support the bright fruit, and a touch of minerality complements the delicious red fruit expression over a smooth finish.
The Hess Collection isn’t just saying they want to protect Mother Nature, they’re doing something about it. In partnership with The National Forest Foundation, the winery’s Pour One, Plant One program will help rebuild forests around the country. Hess has committed to supporting long-term environmental efforts, with each bottle of its Hess Select range of wines sold over the next year contributing towards the planting of 25,000 trees in National Forests around the United States.
From now through June 2021, sales of Hess Select Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon will support the National Forest Foundation as they work to strengthen forests throughout the US. You go, Hess. Because last we checked, there’s only one Planet Earth, and it’s definitely the only place where we can grow wine.
This Cabernet Sauvignon delivers mouth filling, deeply intense blackberry fruit across the palate with clove and cardamom spice, with a firm, lush mouthfeel. Complex and dusty tannins add structure to the juicy fullness of the fruit, making this your new go-to Cabernet pairing for grilling any red meat.
A darkly intense, multilayered, rich and approachable wine with depth of fruit, plushness and creamy richness; offers blackberry, blueberry and macerated strawberry aromas, with subtle baking spice notes of cinnamon, chocolate, and coffee, alongside more savory notes of black olive and herbs. On the palate, there is elegance, freshness and complexity, showing lifted dark blackberry, blueberry and black raspberry fruits followed by hints of dark coffee and black pepper spice.
The Stags’ Leap winery is also currently offering private and public virtual tasting experiences via Instagram at @stagsleapwinery, and other platforms. Corresponding wines/tasting kits for each virtual tasting can be purchased in advance. See their website for this current details.
This red wine blend is a cult classic, recognized for its artistic label and untraditional blend of unique varietals. The wine features enticing aromas of Bing cherry, dark chocolate, and roasted fig and is perfect for those seeking a smooth and luscious finish. The ultimate BBQ-companion, this prominently Zinfandel red blend strives to balance the fat in heavy meats, leading to the ‘perfect’ bite!
A velvety, rich wine, this red exhibits a dark ruby color with bold aromas of cherry, black pepper, and baking spice. The wine’s mouthfeel is elegantly layered and generous, making a mouthwatering pairing with ribs or grilled herbed lamb. Zinfandel, Petit Sirah, and Syrah is in this blend. Throw the rules out the window and pop it on ice for 10 minutes before you pour for a cool and refreshing glass of red wine.
Sourced from small farms in Argentina, Italy, and France, Tussock Jumper’s single-serve wines are incredibly convenient for outdoor activities, ideal for adding to take-out meals, and social distanced sipping with friends. Their recyclable bottles come with a screw cap and attached plastic cup, making them the ideal choice for all of your outdoor needs. Try their Malbec with a big, juicy burger, or Pinot Noir with grilled pork chops or barbecued chicken.
THE WHITES AND ROSÉS
Bev is a made by chicks canned wine, offering 3 refreshing blends, including a California Rosé that is a crisp, dry, slightly carbonated, proprietary blend offering bright aromatics of strawberry, raspberry, white peach and watermelon; a Sauvignon Blanc with aromatics of crisp green apple, white nectarine and a light, fresh, citrus finish; and a Pinot Grigio featuring light and refreshing notes of elderflower, pear, and a zesty grapefruit finish. These wines are also great for outdoor sipping, beach days, and on the boat.
A velvety white wine with notes of juicy peach, toasted pear, roasted pineapple, lemon peel and hazelnut on the palate. The wine’s long fruit forward and toasty complexity lingers luxuriously for a rich, creamy finish. This Chardonnay is best enjoyed by the pool, and paired with chicken on the grill or a summer salad.
Aged in oak, this is a richer style of Sauvignon Blanc that still has the varietal’s signature brightness. ‘Fumé’ means smoked, so you can imagine the flavor profile of this delish summer white, blended with Sémillon grapes while aged on the lees. A glass displays aromas of white summer peaches with juicy lemon citrus and tangerine zest in each refreshing, mouthwatering sip. Great on its own in the hot sunshine, or paired with grilled shrimp or lobster.
A crisp, unique white wine blend featuring a classic Chardonnay base, with fun, floral varietals like Roussane and Muscat blended in. This full and balanced wine boasts aromas of lychee, citrus, apple pie and peach which culminate in a lengthy finish. Expect a slightly sweeter finish, and pair this blend with fresh, grilled white fish like flounder or snapper to allow the subtleties of flavor in the fish to shine without overwhelming the palate.