6 perfect picnic wines – as chosen by Society staff
We don't want to tempt fate with the weather gods, but the Great British summer is just around the corner and that means it's time to start picnic planning! We're looking forward to lazy, sunny days with a bottle of something delicious and a basket full of tasty nibbles – so much so, in fact, that the staff here at The Society have all been discussing our best wine picks for a picnic (even rainy day ones on the sofa!)
Here's our top six picnic wines (plus scroll down for a chance to buy a mixed case of all of our faves):
The Society's Vinho Verde 2016
This very on-trend wine is light in alcohol and refreshing, and of course our Society-label Vinho Verde has the typical delicate spritz for which this wine is classically known.
Who chose it: Joanna Goodman, News & Content Editor
'It was our picnic hero last year, when we drank a really chilled bottle of it on the beach in glorious May sunshine in North Wales (yes, there really was sunshine in Wales!) We just had standard picnic fare with it – sandwiches, handmade sausage rolls, olives and a tub of artichokes – and it really hit the spot with everyone, even though the group varied in age from 20-something to octogenarian!'
Prosecco Brut I Duecento
Another lighter option, this Prosecco stands out from the less impressive examples knocking about, and brings a dash of class to your picnic.
Who chose it: Gareth Park, Marketing Campaign Manager
'A good bottle of something sparkling is a must when having a picnic; after all, the fact it's warm enough to eat outside is cause enough for celebration! Prosecco is my go-to fizz but there's a world of difference between the sodastream-like mass-produced wines and the real thing, like this example. Fresh and gentle, with lovely apple flavours, there's not many better wines to go with finger foods or better ways to get the party started.'
The freshness, racy acidity and appetising salty tang of this Loire white make it perfect for sipping in the fresh air.
Who chose it: Louisa Peskett, Merchandising Manager
'I'm lucky to have a summer birthday so sometimes when I'm blessed with a sunny one my husband and I head to Mersea Island in Essex to a seafood restaurant renowned for its oysters that allows you to bring your own wine. You can't book, so you have to come prepared to picnic on the beach if you can't get a table! We bring a seafood-friendly wine like Muscadet in our cool box, and Domaine des Ratelles is our favourite example.'
Another lower-alcohol option that suits lunchtime drinking, and very food-friendly too.
Who chose it: Tim Sykes, Society Buyer
'My favourite picnic red is Beaujolais, slightly chilled. It's versatile with all kinds of picnic foods, particularly cold meats and pork pies (a favourite of mine!) and is also low in tannins, so it slips down very easily. The Society's Beaujolais-Villages is an ideal place to start.'
A longstanding member favourite, and with good reason – it's a super, vanilla-infused example of a Rioja with vibrant red fruit and a deliciously smooth texture.
Who chose it: Simon Gatley, Assistant Merchandiser – Fine Wine Merchandise Planner
'This is a great picnic wine that lends itself to being around the campfire grazing on olives, Iberico ham and Manchego cheese. After a hard day of keeping 30 cubs entertained and sent home thoroughly exhausted, this is a welcome treat to relax and enjoy after only eating the odd cold sausage while on the run. A lovely, comforting wine, and particularly delicious with pork pies.'
A classic example of Côtes-du-Rhône; round, fruity, full-flavoured and with a lick of spice. Universally popular both with wine drinkers and as an all-purpose food match.
Who chose it? Sebastian Payne MW, Society Buyer
'It's always popular. We keep it simple and serve it with pâté, fruit, ham, bread and cheese – basically any food we can eat with our fingers!'