Bellavista Franciacorta Brut N.V.
Provenance: Lombardia, Italy
Available at: West End Wines, 4906 Laclede Ave., Central West End, westendwines.com; $35.50
Pairings: Crudo • Cheese soufflé • Tempura
Franciacorta is the name of this sparkling wine, as well as its growing region and production method. Creamy and rich with tiny, tight bubbles, it is made mostly of Chardonnay with touches of Pinot Nero and Pinot Bianco. Made with a process that mimics méthode champenoise, this Italian bubbly is rich with ripe green fruits of apple and pear and has a toasty finish filled with lingering vanilla notes.
The Charles Smith Family Vino Pinot Grigio 2011
Provenance: Columbia Valley, Wash.
Available at: Straub’s Markets, multiple locations, straubs.com; $13.49
Pairings: Cream sauces • Butter-poached fish • Curry chicken salad
With a wife hailing from Italy, it was only a matter of time before Charles Smith began to experiment with native Italian varietals in the Northwest. Aromas of freshly snipped greens are followed by pear and honeysuckle notes against a stonelike minerality in this single-vineyard Pinot Grigio. Crisp, elegant and fruity, this white complements summer fare of varying flavors, spices and textures.
Cleto Chiarli Lambrusco Vecchia Modena 2010
Provenance: Emilia-Romagna, Italy
Available at: St. Louis Wine Market & Tasting Room, 164 Chesterfield Commons E., Chesterfield, stlwinemarket.com; $16
Pairings: BBQ • Prosciutto • Ricotta
Produced in the frizzante style, this fruity, frothy and food-friendly wine is light-bodied yet bursts with intense berry flavor. Lambrusco can range from bone-dry to dessert in a glass, and the Modena is nowhere near the sweet side. It exhibits a clean, bright bouquet reminiscent of sour cherries and freshly picked raspberries.
STLwinegirl Angela Ortmann shares her passion for all things epicurean through her event and consultation business, which is dedicated to enhancing your food and wine experience.