Chill Out

You don’t need to be a sommelier to sense the seasons. Bring on the white! We’ve handpicked a collection of refreshing, off-the-beaten path whites that will stock your fridge all summer long. All are affordable and ready for uncorking.

Gramona, “Gessamí” (Peñedés, Spain—2011) 

$15

This little gem from Spain’s northeast coast is a blend of muscat and sauvignon blanc. It’s sexy and floral without being cloying. Try it with chicken satay skewered with pineapple. Available at Woodland Hills Wine Company, 22622 Ventura Blvd., 818-222-1111

Barberani, Orvieto Classico Superiore, “Castagnolo”  (Umbria, Italy—2011)

$16

We love this wine from the under-represented Orvieto region in Umbria. A traditional country blend of trebbiano, malvasia, grechetto and other grapes, it’s the epitome of delicious, unpretentious Italian wine that tastes great with just about everything. Available at wineshop.com

Szoke Matyás, Zöld Veltelini – Grüner Veltliner (Mátra, Hungary—2011)

$15

Grüner veltliner has long been the darling grape of sommeliers because of its versatility. This bottling from Hungary is crisp, green and peppery with notes of lime rind and clover on the finish. Available at bluedanubewine.com

Clendenen Family Vineyards, Aligoté (Santa Maria Valley, California—2010)

$22

An expert in all things chardonnay and pinot, Clendenen’s more maverick bottlings, like this aligoté—Burgundy’s other great white grape—always piques interest among wine lovers. Available at aubonclimat.com

Argiolas, Vermentino, “Costamolino” (Sardinia, Italy—2011)

$16

Wishing you had a villa in southern Italy? Doesn’t get more Mediterranean than the island of Sardinia, where vermentino is one of the archetypical white grapes. With notes of basil and pignoli, this is a wine begs for homemade pesto pasta. Available at Vendome, 10600 Riverside Dr., Toluca Lake, 818-766-9953

Mulderbosch, Chenin Blanc (Western Cape, South Africa—2011)

$11

Chenin blanc is essentially the sweet, plump cousin of elegant chardonnay or lean sauvignon blanc— less finesse but still a voluptuous wine that delivers. Available at Woodland Hills Wine Company

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