My friends back home didn’t call me the Pinot Punisher for nothing. I know cheap wine better than anyone, so I’d like to give it to you as clean as I can here. Honest, unadulterated, and true to form. I’m under the firm belief that no one should be touching red wine from May to August. If red wine is your jam in the summer, this article probably isn’t going to be for you. In my formative years, red wine represented cool temperatures and leaves changing. Fireside chats and snow. Red wine brings to mind blankets and entire days spent indoors because bad weather has rendered travel impossible. White wine, on the other hand, was always a summer beverage. One or two ice cubes with a glass of white is really all you need to ride the perpetual wave that is summer. So here it is, a guide to drinking wine as the last remaining days of summer loom in front of all of us. You’ve got until the end of August so make these last few weeks count.
A nice Pinot Grigio brings to mind a back patio with friends. Entire days spent poolside or at the beach as you pour glass after glass into your Tervis or Yeti tumbler. The great thing about Pinot Grigio is that, at least for me, there is no discernible difference between a five dollar bottle and an eighty dollar bottle. Maybe that has something to do with the ice cube, but I’ll do that until the day I die. Learned that from my Grandma who is a pro-white wine drinker. One ice cube keeps you hydrated and allows you to drink more Pinot, idiots.
Before you all come down from the dark corners of the internet with torch and pitchfork, yes, I realize that Rose is not technically white wine. But it might as well be. It connotes the same thing that a Pinot Grigio does. You drink rose in the summer because it feels right. Ordering a glass of rose puts you in a higher tax bracket, if only for the seven to ten minutes that you spend drinking it. It’s not discernible or explanatory, but you post up with a glass of the pink stuff and I’m immediately assuming you come from old money. Rose has been having a little bit of a renaissance in the last few years. I liken it to what happened with brunch back in 2012. Rose is the new kid at the popular table that everyone likes more than the established elites. Whether or not rose has staying power remains to be seen, but I’ve been a fan for a few months now and I’ve been finding myself buying it more and more over the traditional pinot.
Riesling is the red-headed stepchild of the white wine world who also happens to be extremely talented. That talent is just something that hardly anyone knows about (at least in the mid-20’s crowd that I know). I rarely see people ordering Riesling, but I can tell you that when they do, people notice. You turn heads when you bring a bottle of Riesling out. Riesling is a wine that tastes like no other in the world. If you put a glass of rose and a glass of pinot grigio in front of me with a blindfold on, I probably wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. Whether that’s because I have a trash palate or because I pretty much exclusively drink cheap wine is anyone’s guess, but Riesling I know immediately from the smell. It connotes peach and apple flavors, and I like having a glass of Ries on a night that hovers right around 62 degrees. No lower, no higher. I don’t drink it often, but when I do it’s always enjoyable.
I don’t why, but I always saw chardonnay as the trailer trash of white wines. It tastes nothing like other white wines and this is always the one that gives me splitting headaches the next morning. When I think chardonnay, I think plastic airplane cup on a redeye that you don’t want to be on. I think networking events. Just general shittiness. I have no reason for thinking this way, I just hate chardonnay and that’s all there is to it. Sorry, but I’m really not sorry about it.
I’m not trying to tell you what to drink. If you want to have a glass of red wine in the summer be my guest. I’ll probably make a condescending remark about it that I’ll think is funny, but that’ll be it and then I’ll continue on my way. And as much as I love Riesling, Rose, and even some lesser known white wines like Gewürztraminer or Semillon, I’ll always go back to my bottom bitch Pinot Grigio. There is just nothing like a fat glass of P.G. with one ice cube. Enjoy the rest of the summer, fall will be here before we know it and that means it’s back to harsh, brown liquor. See ya out there. .
Image via Shutterstock