Hot picks per­fect for a siz­zling bar­be­cue

Belfast Telegraph - Weekend - - DRINK -

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

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