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Time to let the hair down and feel the breeze.
July is fully upon us; embrace its sweet, saccharin summer vibes. If this involves being on a boat, then all the better. But even if sailing the seas is not in the cards, surfing the groove is always possible when you crank on the yacht rock.
At times maligned, yet always smooth — and admittedly, likely more infectious than people like to admit — yacht rock is summer’s classic power-pop anthem. But what wines pair best with yacht rock? And by proxy are ready to sail away into summer pairing?
Ruffino 2022 Aqua di Venus Pinot Grigio, Italy ($26.99, #425424)
The only thing better than saying, I’m on a boat, is exclaiming, I’m on a boat with a bottle of Pinot Grigio. Pinot Grigio has established its poolside cred, so crank it up a notch with Ruffino’s Aqua di Venus. It hits the classic PG nuances of citrus and flowers in a zesty yet smooth, fruity and exuberant white — all in a jaunty, fluted-shaped bottle. If this isn’t yacht rock worthy, well then Kenny Loggins has no business singing around a keyboard riff. Or, as the back label explains, this wine is “Fresh and delicate like the sea breeze that kisses the Friuli DOC region of Italy.”
Bottom line: B, Pair with Loggins’ Heart to Heart
Sandhill 2022 Rosé, B.C. ($21.99, #583351)
If there was a colour associated with yacht rock it would be rosé. Or wait, is that more a shade? Admittedly, if there’s a need to think this through the plot has likely been lost. Interestingly enough, when sailing the power chord seas it does seem like a deeper, electric pink-hued rosé is in order. Sandhill’s latest vintage pink hits the right notes. A quirky blend — mostly Merlot and Gamay, with good dollops of Syrah and Petit Verdot, plus a splash of Viognier — it is certainly not shy. Fruity and juicy, with acidity to balance, this is an easy summer crowd pleaser.
Bottom line: B+, The only call: Sailing by Christopher Cross
Louis Jadot 2021 Combe aux Jacques Beaujolais-Villages, France ($29.99, #469924)
Like quintessential rock yacht, this bottle easily stands the test of time. Similarly, both Beaujolais and yacht rock get dismissed by some as unserious at best, and at worst simplistic. To those naysayers I suggest picking up a bottle of this timeless Jadot Beaujolais-Villages and heading to www.yachtornyacht.com. Pour a glass and listen to the top 50 tracks while savouring this fresh and fruity, classy and honest Gamay that brings semblances of red fruit, herbs and forest floor. It’s polished, it’s balanced, and really this easy riffing red just brings good energy overall.
Bottom line: A-, Perfect pairing = The Doobie Brothers’ What A Fool Believes
The Swirl: Rosé Disco
Yacht rock and a Rosé Disco certainly feels like a natural fit! The latter, billed as a “Rosé Wine Fest and Picnic,” is scheduled to take place from 1-6 p.m. on Sunday, July 30 at the PNE Fairgrounds. The event features more than 25 local and international rosés paired with a culinary feast and live DJ sets — and yes, the suggested dress code is pink and white. Tickets are $30, plus taxes and fees. Details at www.rosedisco.com.
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Wine Guy: B.C. rosé roundup