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Twelve Wines to Drown Your Political Agony This Fourth of July

And the food to pair with them. 

 

Although national politics may be unsettling, there’s still one thing we all can agree on—the Fourth of July was built for wine. From hamburgers and barbecue to grilled corn and fish tacos, here are some of our favorite wine pairings to start the fireworks at this year’s party.

Eat: Hamburgers
Drink: Boom Boom! Syrah ($12.99)
A pushy wine that’s full of explosive flavors, this syrah pairs with a burger or even a hot dog. Expect coffee, leather, spice, and dark fruits like blueberry from this screw cap wine.

Eat: Steak
Drink: Schug Merlot ($30)

Merlot is making a comeback and this big, complex bottle exemplifies why it deserves to be in the spotlight. A full-bodied wine that displays intense fruit flavors, bright tannins, and plentiful acidity, this red will mellow out and turn to silk with fatty cuts of meat like a ribeye, T-bone, or even New York strip.

Eat: Pork Tenderloin
Drink: 
CrossBarn Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir ($37)
A playful pinot that takes you on a long ride ride of different flavors, this wine is an ideal accent to pork tenderloin. This fruit forward pinot will complement barbecue sauce—or skip the sauce and just sip this juicy wine with each bite.

Eat: Ribs
Drink:
Bella Florence Vineyard Zinfandel ($40)
Zinfandel is generally accepted as the best red pairing wine for barbecue, and this velvety zin, with flavors of fig, peppery spice, and jam will show you why. It may be formidable, but it will not overpower the sauce.

Eat: Pulled Pork Sliders
Drink: BACA “Cat’s Cradle” Zinfandel ($50)

This spicy wine has the tannins and the ripeness that zinfandel needs to stand up to pulled pork, with complex flavors that will hang around and until your next slider.

Eat: Grilled Salmon
Drink: Martinelli Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir ($45)

This pinot noir is a versatile, easy drinking, savory with a well-balanced acidity that will cut the salmon’s fat, while the dark fruit flavors, light tartness, and silky texture will enhance the smokiness imparted by the grill.

Eat: Grilled Oysters
Drink:
Sea Slopes Sonoma Coast Chardonnay ($30)
Expect flavors of lemon, citrus and apricot in this wine. With a refreshing, crisp acidity, it counterpoints the oyster’s creamy texture. The briny, sea flavors of the oyster will also match nicely with the wine’s minerality.

Eat: Grilled Shrimp with Lime
Drink:
Cooper & Thief Sauvignon Blanc ($24.99)
Easy! There is a ton of bright, refreshing citrus in this sauvignon blanc that will pair with the shrimp. Feel free to add other citrus fruits or herbs, too. It’s all about freedom.

Eat: Buffalo Chicken
Drink:
Acumen Mountainside Sauvignon Blanc ($30)
A bit pricey for a sauvignon blanc, but worth it since it’s hard to find a wine to pair with buffalo sauce. But Buffalo chicken makes a great partner for the peach, pineapple, and citrus flavors of this wine. You could also try the Kung Fu Girl Riesling ($12.99), another great one for spicy foods.

Eat: Mexican-Style Street Corn
Drink: 
Heitz Cellar Chardonnay ($27)
The wine’s easy-but-bright acidity underscores the crunch of freshly grilled corn. With just a dash of sweetness, it mingles well will the spices and cheese that top elote.

Eat: Fish Tacos
Drink:
Alexander Valley Vineyards Dry Rose’ of Sangiovese ($15)
Alexander Valley Vineyards says that this wine is “pure California sunshine in a glass.” Perhaps it was the power of suggestion, but the rich flavor certainly feels like a sunny day. Pair this rosé with grilled fish tacos or try it with ceviche and oysters.

Eat: Fruit Salad
Drink: Red Car Rosé of Pinot Noir ($28)

Bright flavors of strawberry, red grapefruit, tangerine, and a hint of kiwi. With all that fruit, the wine right will enhance any fruit salad—or a green salad, for that matter. 

 

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