There are those among us for whom the thought of a wine-based cocktail is tantamount to heresy. Yes, I am firmly in that camp. Not since I sipped a peach-flavored Bartles & James wine cooler through a straw (only once, I swear!) have I even considered the relative merits of the wine cocktail. Sangria shot to the mouth from the spout of a bota bag notwithstanding, my current stance is that if somebody’s making wine-based cocktails, it’s probably because the establishment in which they are making them has not yet received its liquor license.
But that’s not always the case. And I realize I am a bit of a hardliner on this topic. And so I am willing to concede that there are indeed some fine wine-cocktail creations and there is no better time to enjoy them than during the dog days of summer. Yes, some very reputable bars and restaurants–with very real liquor licenses–have taken into fashion the art of the wine cocktail.
And recently the winemakers R.H. Phillips and Ecco Domani announced they had gone one step further by hiring top-shelf cocktail consultants to create wine concoctions using their brands. The results have yielded such palate-pleasers as the Star Gazer, which blends Phillips’ Chardonnay, dark run, vanilla-flavored simple syrup and pineapple juice. I have to admit, that sounds tempting enough to persuade even me out of my stubborn ways.
Would love to hear from you if you have a suggestion on a wine cocktail I should try this summer.