Foodies and sippers unite. It’s summertime and this is our time! Sitting outside basking in the sunshine with a cool glass of white wine in hand and simple summer snacks within arm’s reach … hello, perfection. Wine Guide Melissa Summar lives for these moments, and she has three amazing little snack recipes for you to pair with Grüner Veltliner (a.k.a. the summer white wine you NEED in your life). Here’s Melissa with a peek into her summer patio life complete with friends, wine, and real good snacks.
When I think about summertime and socializing, I think about spending time with friends in the backyard—often with my other mom friends so our kids can hang out and have fun, too. Last summer, I spent a lot of time with my next-door neighbor who doubled as my best friend! We enjoyed happy hours with wine and snacks while the kids played in the backyard, running off the endless amount of energy kids seem to have.
On warm summer days like those, I love to share a crisp, chilled white wine like our latest Lulo Grüner Veltliner from California. You’ll see me sipping this wine ALL summer! It’s so fruity! It’s bursting with apples and pears and a hint of citrus. But, what’s a great wine without the perfect summer snack? I’ve come up with the ideal summer snack menu for our Lulo Grüner Veltliner, including recipes, so you, too, can plan a sweet summer happy hour on the patio or deck with your good friends. Let’s dig in.
Honey Goat Cheese Bites
I love a little snack that you can just pop in your mouth, like Honey Goat Cheese Bites—also so quick to make! They pair well with Grüner because the goat cheese has a slight acidity to it and when that is paired with the slight acidity from the wine it makes the goat cheese smooth and creamy on your palate. It’s an experience you must try for yourself!
1 12-count box of phyllo shells
2 ounces of goat cheese (I used honey goat cheese but plain would work great too)
2 tablespoons of honey
2 to 3 sprigs of fresh thyme leaves
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place phyllo shells on a sheet pan. Crumble goat cheese into each shell, drizzle with a little honey, then sprinkle the thyme leaves over the top. Bake 7 to 10 minutes or until goat cheese is warm and melted. Let cool slightly and enjoy!
Compare Grüner Veltliner to other lighter-styled whites and cocktails. It’s NOT like a Chardonnay … it IS like a fruity Sauvignon Blanc or drier Viognier. It’s a white for lovers of Gin and Tonics or Lemon Drops. It’s also tremendously food friendly and pairs with salads and grilled veggies as well as with heavy fried foods.Leslie Sbrocco, Director of Sommology
Shrimp Salsa and Tortilla Chips
I don’t know about you, but I love anything that even remotely resembles chips and salsa. My next top pick to pair with our Lulo Grüner Veltliner has all the flavors of salsa in a dish that is satisfying enough for dinner. This Mexican-inspired shrimp salsa, like salad, screams summer. It has fresh ingredients, it’s super easy to assemble, and you eat it with chips! What’s not to love?
1 pound of cooked shrimp, peeled and chopped
2 medium tomatoes, diced and seeded
1 jalapeño, finely diced
1 avocado, diced
2 limes, juiced
½ red onion, finely diced
1 teaspoon olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Salt and pepper to taste
Combine all the ingredients together in a bowl and let set 10 to 15 minutes for all of the flavors to meld together. Give your salsa another stir, and serve. Want to make this a simple lunch? Serve it on a tostada with little bit of shredded lettuce and finely sliced radishes. Yum.
Want to control the heat of your dish? Here is a tip: When you’re dicing a jalapeño, you can choose to remove all the seeds and the membrane. By doing that, you will take most of the heat away. If you like it a little bit spicier, leave the membrane and some seeds while dicing your jalapeño. I like to remove the seeds and leave the membrane on half of the jalapeño.
Garlicky Summer Bruschetta
My third summer snack to pair with Grüner Veltliner is bruschetta. I am known to make a super delicious can’t-get-enough, garlicky bruschetta. Bruschetta and wine always make me think of being at a vineyard because it’s often been on the menu at the wineries I’ve visited. For good reason too! It’s so yummy and pairs with a variety of wines.
Let’s talk about garlic for a minute. Raise your hand if you’re like me when a recipe calls for one clove of garlic, and you chuckle a little and then add like four cloves of garlic. You might be a garlic lover! The only thing I don’t like about garlic is how it gives you garlic breath and then you aren’t sure if you want to kiss your honey or not because of the overpowering garlic breath. But, when you’ve been married almost eight years like I have (happy early anniversary to my hubby!), you don’t seem to care how garlicky your breath is (or maybe you do, and you still go in for all the kisses to torture them because it’s all about keeping the spark alive, right?). So, my advice … go all in on the garlic with this recipe.
4 to 5 medium tomatoes on the vine, seeded and diced
1/3 cup of chopped basil
3 to 4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1 loaf of French bread, toasted and sliced
1 garlic clove peeled, left whole
Olive oil for brushing
To make the bruschetta topping:
In a bowl, toss tomatoes, basil, and garlic together. Mix in balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Let sit covered in the refrigerator 1 to 2 hours before serving.
To make the toasted bread slices:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place sliced bread onto a sheet pan. Brush with olive oil. Toast in the oven 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown and toasted. Pull out of the oven and let cool 1 to 3 minutes. Take the peeled garlic clove and rub it over each toasted slice of bread. The garlic will melt into the bread making the most amazing garlic bread! Top with bruschetta and serve.
Snack and Sip Time
I hope you take time this summer to enjoy time on your patio sipping wine with your bestie, snacking on something delicious! We all need to slow down and just enjoy the company around us sometimes. I know that our Traveling Vineyard wines have been a huge part of my memories and I hope you will bring them along for yours as well. Bon appétit and cheers!