Stop right there! We’re not going back to school—YET! There’s still plenty of time for picnics and barbecues! Don’t let those back-to-school ads fool you! It’s only mid-August, OK? It’s still warm and many of us are still on vacation, so there’s lots more time for relaxing.
One of the best ways to relax and refresh is to pick a nice white wine to go with that BBQ chicken. In our July issue, we showed you 13 Smart Picks, with some Rieslings (Hogue Late Harvest 2010 was tops) and some pinot grigios (Black Swan Vineyards 2010 topped the list here).
One of the hardest things to do when you’re picnicking or barbecuing is keep the wine chilled. Here are our tips from the July story.
Chilling any bottle of white wine to a proper serving temperature takes about 2 hours (for heavier chardonnay or sweeter riesling) to almost 3 hours (for lighter pinot grigio and sauvignon blanc) in the fridge. Twenty minutes in the freezer ill also do it.
But once the wine is served, it will warm up if it’s left out on a table. One way to keep it cold is to plunge it into a bucket of ice and water—just be sure to replenish the ice as it melts.
You can also find gadgets on the market that promise to keep wine “perfectly chilled.” We tested one: the Corkcicle. It’s a reusable, gel-filled plastic bottle stopper. Though it kept full bottles cool for an extra 20 minutes or so, it cost $23, which might be a waste of money if you already own an ice bucket. But if you don’t want the extra clutter at the table or you’re at a picnic away from refrigeration, the Corkcicle might be worth a try.