Here comes summer (hopefully)

the sunSummer is now officially here and with it the hope of sultry days and the need for a cooling drink. So now’s the time to choose chilled whites as these make a good choice for wine lovers looking for refreshment.

Cold meats and light vegetarian dishes are a good stand-by on a hot evening and the citrus and buttery smells and taste of white wine make a good match.

But sought after Burgundies or New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs can set you back as much as £25 a bottle, but not all whites are as expensive. Chile, Spain and southern Europe produce whites made with their indigenous grape varieties at a quarter of the price which are just as enjoyable.

barbecue kebabsAnd if you’re planning a barbecue then the lighter tasting flavours of white wines go well with fish, chicken or vegetable kebabs cooked over coals. These foods often pick up a smoke-laced tang and so need wines made with more fruity-flavoured white grape varieties for a better match. Gooseberry tasting Sauvignon Blanc and the honey tones of a Colombard go well.

Mind you keeping white wines cold while the sun shines and the barbecue radiates heat is tricky, but not insoluble. For a quick and cheap solution, wrap your whites in newspaper soaked in water. As the water evaporates it takes the heat away, so keeping your wine cool for about half an hour. For a longer lasting solution, stand your white wines in a mixture of water and ice cubes.

PG Wine Reviews

Journey's End ChardonnayWine Atlas Sauvignon Blanc 2014 France

£5.97 Asda

Sherbet dabs in a bottle – an excellent wine and a great price. Loads of other flavours too: gooseberry, lemon, lime, pineapple, melon, pear and apple – what a fruit salad!

Wine Atlas Feteasca Regala Romania

£5.97 Asda

A Romanian wine to match with Thai fish curry – its apple and pear flavours match the meal's sweet-sour creaminess.

La Casa Spanish Sauvignon Blanc 2013

£5.99 Co-op

Wine of the Week – a good everyday wine that will match almost anything and is very gluggable. Expect pineapple, banana and lemon flavours – but no gooseberry which is unusual for a Sauvignon Blanc.

Truly Irresistible Italian Greco 2014

£6.99 Co-op (new)

It may be new but it'll be easy to spot – just look out for a bottle with Dracula on the label. Yes, hmm. Nice wine though – lemon, apricot and honey.

La Vieille Ferme French Vin Blanc 2014

£6.99 Co-op

Light and fruity white that tastes of apple, melon and celery.

This article also appeared as Paula's Wines of the Week on MatureTimes.co.uk