Your Late Summer Guide to Wines

Wednesday, August 3, 2016 | 8:55 pm

Summer is made for sun filled afternoons and leisurely evenings. Make the most of this delectable season with a refreshing glass of wine. We spoke with Michael Osborn at Chronicle Wine to get the low-down on your summer sips.

“People have a tendency to favor lighter wines in the summer – they look for things that aren’t so full-bodied,” he said.

Chronicle Wine, formally known as Pie ‘ Burger Wine, is the backroom wine shop you’ve been searching for. The space once belonged to The Chronicle restaurant and is now home to a charming wine shop. This wine cellar for those in the know stocks wines you won’t find at big retail shops and focuses on smaller distributors. They stock wines from California, Europe and New Zealand. Best of all, there’s free corkage at Pie ‘n Burger next door.



“In France, the summertime drink if chilled Rosés,” he said. Osborn explains that rosés have recently gotten more traction in Pasadena and, with the frosé trend emerging, it’s easy to see why people are starting to appreciate this pink wine.

Rosé is made from red grapes and has a drier taste and lighter body – it also tends to have lower alcohol content. Osborn adds that the Italian rosés tend to be fruitier and that these wines pair well with salads, chicken or fish.

Although Osborn hasn’t personally tried a frosé, he speculates that this frozen rosé strawberry smoothie will be a hit for summertime.


This white wine originates from the Burgundy region of France and has a clean, crisp taste but lower alcohol than most reds. Osborn suggests an oak Chardonnay which a mineral-like taste but still is a refreshing choice when it’s hot outside.


Savignon Blancs

Osborn recommends serving this wine chilled or keeping it in an ice bucket during outdoor celebrations. Sauvignon Blanc has a lighter taste and is best served chilled, on its own while the varieties from New Zealand have a fruitier, more grassy taste.

Sauvignon Blancs are known for their crisp finish and lack of sugar. Some people find these wines acidic – try serving them as a spritzer to make them even more refreshing.

Pinot Noir

No need to shy away from reds during the summer. Osborn recommends Pinot Noirs for barbeques because they pair well with meat.

He recommends the Cameron Hughes Pinot Noir – from the central coast of California – because it’s a red that doesn’t overpower you. For a more mineral-like taste, try a Pinot Noir from France.


Osborn suggests chilling the wine in the refrigerator about an hour before serving and keeping an ice bucket handy. He explains that these casual, table wines won’t lose too much nuance if you serve them chilled.

“Wines have become more popular here and people are more adventurous,” said Osborn. Since almost all Chronicle’s wines are under $15, buying a bottle to sample isn’t a daunting investment.

Chronicle Wine is located at 919 East California Boulevard. Call (626) 577-2549 or visit



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