Wine and BBQ? Of Course!

Beverages, Drink, Fire Smoke & Flavor, Wine

This post comes courtesy of Williams-Sonoma associate Steven Lauer.


Ah, barbecue season is here — what better summer ritual is there but to mix the warmth of the outdoors with the grilling of savory food on an open flame? And, to pair with your grilled culinary delight … iced tea, beer, soda? All traditional choices, but what’s the wine lover to do?


Wine and Barbecue?

Yes, wine and barbecue! Considering that barbecue means family, tradition and bringing people together around food, wine is the perfect complement. And we’re not just talking about grilled steaks, no way — too easy. We’re thinking cheeseburgers, ribs, pizza and shrimp on the barbie. Though, to be fair, many of you might already be asking yourself: do I really want to pair my Screaming Eagle Cabernet with a cheeseburger? Probably not — but there are wines (both red and white) that are well suited to grilled and smoked foods.


I’ve picked three wines that can take on the heartiest, gut-busting barbecue foods and round out a sunny afternoon, while not busting your budget.


The Ultimate Cheeseburger Wine
Zynthesis Old Vine ZinfandelThis BIG jammy bomb of a Zinfandel is such a value that I’m reticent to mention it, for fear that now I’ll no longer be able to find it. If you do find this Zin, it’s a steal, as most places sell it for under $15. Because the Zynthesis is such a fruity wine, it will pair quite well with a gooey cheeseburger or barbecued pizza.



The Ultimate Ribs Wine
Rosenblum Pato Vineyard Petite SirahContrary to a common misconception, there ain’t nothing small about Petite Sirah. The Pato’s dark fruit and inky demeanor matched with its chocolate spice aromas make it a natural accompaniment for any barbecue rib recipe. I’ve been a fan of Rosenblum’s über hearty wines for years, and I just love this Petite Sirah because it makes a great match with the spiciest of barbecue sauces. This wine is available directly from the winery in Alameda, CA, and at under $25, it’s a great deal.



The Ultimate Sitting on the Patio Wine
Mazzocco Sauvignon BlancI wanted to write that this wine pairs well with grilled prawns, scallops and vegetables. Not that it doesn’t — it SO does. But not every wine has to be paired with food. Case in point, this Sauv Blanc can also be served alone as a cocktail to perfectly complement a laid-back afternoon spent on the patio around the grill with friends. The Mazzocco Sauv Blanc has aromas of passion fruit and honeysuckle, and splashes the tongue with pears, pineapple and grapefruit flavors. You can purchase this for around $22 at your local wine shop.


About the author: Steven works in Williams-Sonoma’s corporate training department. He is a self-described refugee of the American Midwest who came to the Bay Area for work and has since fallen in love with the hearty red wines of Sonoma Valley. Steven balances his wine vices with mountain biking and running in California’s Marin County.

4 comments about “Wine and BBQ? Of Course!

  1. Jenny Johnson

    Sounds like I have a new Sauvignon Blanc to add to my summer wine list. And I will definitely be trying those two reds! Thanks Steven!

  2. Sandi Graham

    I am always looking for a good Zin – I love it with a grilled steak. Sauvignon Blanc’s are my favorite late afternoon patio wine! I can’t wait to try your picks.

  3. Steven

    If you like big summer taste, the Mazzocco Sauvignon Blanc is for you. Mazzocco also makes some really tasty Zins, but most are $30+ so they didn’t make this BBQ focused list. Love the Champagne idea–come back to blog soon–we’re writing up a “Bubbles for Summer” article.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *