Fresh picks are right fit for patios, barbecues

I’m doing LCBO Vintages picks this week because there is an opportunity for you to try a few wines from South Africa. Everyone keeps asking me about this country, but as I mentioned recently, there is not a lot available in the regular stores. So here we go with a red, white and rosé from Vintages — you should be able to find these wines at any major LCBO. They’ve just hit the shelves so you’ll be the first to serve them. Pick up a weekend stash and let the party begin!

In a previous column, I said the South Africa wine style was somewhere between France and Australia. But you need to file that idea away for now because the wines below are all crowdpleasers. No French elegance or austerity in sight.

• Brunch on the patio:

Kanu Chenin is fresh, fruity, fun wine to splash around for a lunch or brunch. Off-dry, cheerful and very summery. It’s also well-priced.


• Rosé for food:

Goats Rosé has lots of flavour including a whiff of smoke. It’s semi-rich and ideal for barbecued white meats or a burger.

• Beefy barbecue:

If you drink Aussie Shiraz, you’ll love Malverne. Juicy, spicy, mellow, seductive and raring to please. You’ll also find smokey flavours here making the wine a natural partner for barbecued beef or lamb. While it’s generous and crowd-pleasing, there’s also a refreshingly honest wine character. Something South Africa seems to be good at.

By the way, sign up for my free wine e-letter at Buy your dad a Billy’s wine T-shirt for father’s day, which are on sale for the month of June. See my website for details. Cheers!

Billy Munnelly is author, wine critic and publisher of Billy’s Best Bottles Wineletter and Billy’s Best Wines For 2005.

Visit www.billysbestbottles.comfor information about his in-home wine-tasting seminar. To receive a free copy of Billy’s Best Bottles Wineletter, e-mail

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