Last updateTue, 21 Feb 2017 4pm

Local experts pick wines for hot August weather

Photos Courtesy of Christine Moore
Local wine sellers highlight European favorites for light summer wine drinking, paired with food or just a sunset.

Friends are home from trips abroad. Bags of recently purchased school supplies line the entryway. A basket of just-picked tomatoes awaits slicing beside the sink. In summer, we live in our bare feet. The heat of the day is powerful, so we try to stay cool as we anxiously await the evening hours.

It’s the sunsets I most look forward to this time of year – a kaleidoscope of oranges, pinks and lavenders splashed across the horizon. The perfect viewing spot for the sky’s evening show is my back patio, a crisp, cold glass of wine by my side.

Grill portobello mushrooms with a fontina melt

Portabello mushrooms topped with fontina cheese make for savory, meat-free grilling.
Courtesy of Rita Held

The grill is a terrific, versatile outdoor oven. And similar to an indoor oven, it’s not just for the carnivores among us.

Large, sturdy portobello mushrooms are fabulous grilled, and even better with a bit of olive oil, vinegar and herbs. Topped with savory, melty cheese? Wow! It’s umami full tilt – rich and savory. No meat needed.

Peninsula brewers take center stage at SV Beer Week

Courtesy of Derek Wolfgram
Hop Dogma co-founder and brewer Ethan Martini introduced beer lovers to his Alpha-Dankopottamus IPA at the San Mateo County Brewery Festival last month.

The fourth annual Silicon Valley Beer Week, held July 22-30, included nearly 200 events throughout the South Bay and the Peninsula to celebrate the craft beer culture of the region.

While I enjoy a tap takeover by Firestone Walker or Ballast Point as much as the next beer lover, I especially appreciate Beer Week events that highlight up-and-coming local breweries that might not have the marketing muscle or distributor connections of the big craft breweries.

Citrus-y beers celebrate summer

Derek Wolfgram/Special to the Town Crier
Session beers offer an alcohol content low enough to sustain sipping through a long, lazy picnic. Local breweries are celebrating the citrus hop style now in vogue with other fruit-forward influences.

With the hot days of summer upon us, crisp, clean, sessionable beers are the perfect accompaniment to picnics, sporting events or simply sitting in the shade enjoying the outdoors.

Red, white & sparkling: Drinks to share and pair a picnic or barbecue

Christine Moore/Special to the Town Crier
Now that the Fourth of July has launched peak picnic season, try a variety of wines to accompany food served at family cookouts and neighborhood gatherings. A local wine expert matches summer drinks with any meal.

The Fourth of July can be the ideal opportunity to celebrate summer weather, friends, family and food. A month of lazy afternoons at Shoup Park, neighborhood block gatherings, days in the Davenport Beach sand and patio barbecues follow a holiday that is entirely about reveling in our commonalities.

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