Hot picks perfect for a sizzling barbecue
Fact: a sizzling barbecue is now more popular than a luxurious Christmas dinner. Such is our repertoire, the backyard barbie has been transformed into a hit grilling show with Brits spending up to 28 hours prepping for them, more time than a traditional roast, dinner party or festive fare.
Testament to our skewer skills, research from Asda reveals we fire up the grill at least seven times during the summer.
And we’re not deterred by the weather — more than a quarter of us barbecue in the rain, we buy more than six varieties of food to grill, and the barbecue king goes in with guns blazing. Here are the best styles to pair with spicy, smoky meats, Dada No grilled veggies 1 Malbec and seafood... Bonarda Gable & 2016, Grace Shiraz Argentina, Mouvedre £11.99, 2016 and Gaavailable ble & Grace from Virgin Chenin Pinot Wines Grigio 2016, Western Cape, South Africa (both £5.49, reduced from £8.49, now until August 29, Waitrose) Not only do these bottles have sleek, elegantly restrained labels, inside they have some serious class too. The Chenin Pinot is crisp and fruity, and brings a sharp and refreshing tang when paired with grilled chicken skewers. The shiraz has a tangle of blackberry flavours discernible beneath, which go perfectly with sweet potatoes and ribs on the barbie. Barton & Guestier Passeport 2016, Cotes de Provence Magnum, France (1.5L, £19.99, Waitrose) Thanks to the rose revolution, more magnums are within reach, so you don’t have to worry about your friends sinking Nero D’Avola 2014, Sicily, Italy, £12.50, available from Marks and Spencer the pink before the dips and dressings have made it to the table. A real peach with floral aromatics reminiscent of orange groves, it’s fresh and fruity with summer berry flavours and bright citrus and herbal notes which make it the perfect rose for barbecues. Pikes Riesling Traditionale 2016, Clare Valley, Australia (£16.75, Wine Direct) Dry riesling has long been a sommelier’s favourite, so why not introduce this versatile, food-friendly white to the great outdoors? Bone dry and clean as a whistle, the rush of acidity makes it a perfect choice with spicy sausages such as merguez and BBQ pork. The winemakers’ expertise has been awarded with a stash of gold medals and we love the aromas of lemon and lime in this sprightly white. Dada No. 1 Malbec Bonarda 2016, Argentina (£11.99, Virgin Wines) Almost too much of a good thing, you may have to reign your taste buds in before diving into this soft, lush, inky black. A blend of dark, brooding malbec and fruity bonarda, it draws you in with intense violet and blueberry aromas and then cushions you with rich, damson fruit and a trail of blackcurrant, vanilla and sweet oak. Savour with melt-in-the-mouth meat. Nero D’Avola 2014, Sicily, Italy (£12.50, Marks & Spencer, in-store) With a southern Italian character, this solid, rugged red is made from Sicily’s hero grape. Nero d’Avola can withstand the island’s arid heat and the sun-kissed, earthy fruit spends 12 months in oak to soften the tannins. Scented with spiced plum and dried berries, it’s concentrated with blackberry, plums, tart cherry and woody spice. A natural partner with charred meats. Chin-chin. Pikes Riesling Traditionale 2016, Australia, £16.75, available from Wine Direct