The bright, sunny weather is here, and it's the perfect time to fire up the grill for a fantastic barbecue bash. Whether you're grilling juicy steaks, classic hamburgers, or delectable vegetarian dishes, the right wine can elevate your BBQ experience to new heights. Here’s your ultimate guide to pairing wine with your summer BBQ favorites—all under $35!

Steak & Ribs: Bold and Structured

Imagine a sizzling steak on a hot summer's day. To complement its rich flavors, uncork a bottle of a bold, structured red wine, such as a Malbec or Cabernet Sauvignon. The robust flavors of these wines will enhance your steak or ribs, creating a truly indulgent experience.

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Hamburgers: Fruity and Chic Reds

For classic beef patties grilled to perfection, a delicious glass of California Zinfandel is an excellent match. Alternatively, try a Valpolicella Ripasso for a chic yet budget-friendly option that promises flavors reminiscent of an Amarone.

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Hot Dogs: Light and Crisp Whites

The classic hot dog, topped with mustard or ketchup, pairs wonderfully with a refreshing Sauvignon Blanc. The wine’s crisp acidity complements the salty and savory finish of the hot dog.

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BBQ Chicken: Refreshing Whites and Chilled Lambrusco

BBQ chicken is a versatile option best paired with a tropical, buttery Chardonnay. For a playful twist, try a lightly chilled Lambrusco.

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Grilled Salmon: Low Tannin Reds and Rosés

Grilled salmon shines when paired with a classic Pinot Noir, enhancing its rich flavors. Alternatively, a refined Rosé from Provence offers a refreshing complement.

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Vegetarian Delight: Fruity and Fun

Vegetarian BBQ options deserve an excellent wine pairing too. A fruity Cinsault complements grilled vegetables and spicy cottage cheese, while an Italian Grillo pairs well with milder flavors.

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Go Creative: Sparkling Reds

Lambrusco, a fun sparkling red from Italy, is perfect for a BBQ party. Its light, fruity profile with delightful sweet aromas and a refreshing palate makes it a hit.

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Summer Basic: Refreshing Rosés

A timeless favorite for summer, a lovely Rosé is perfect for embracing sunny weather and enjoying a backyard barbecue.

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Elevate your summer BBQ with these exquisite wine pairings. Whether you’re a seasoned griller or a BBQ novice, these wine selections will ensure your party is a smashing success. Cheers to a delightful summer filled with great food, wonderful wine, and fantastic company!