It is summer. You and some friends are playing Ultimate in the park at midday. Trees, paths and grass are all damp from yesterday’s rain, but it’s hot now, naturally. All around, the smell of cooking meat, barbecue sauce, and perfectly roasted fennel, onions and tomatoes wafts from multiple grills. Someone calls a stop to the game of frisbee, maybe you, and opens a bottle of… what? Many things will do, but what for this occasion?
Enter the 2008 Terra Sparkling Malbec, produced in Mendoza in Argentina, a deep liquid ruby swirl in the glass. Loaded with blueberries and blackberries on the nose, leading to more rich black fruit and currants in the mouth with hints of black pepper and earth. The delicate perlage is reminiscent of a fine Champagne, backed by silky tannins culminating in a clean finish. Terra makes a great aperitif, and pairs with hors d’oeuvres, roast pork, or roast chicken, but I would bring out bigger guns (Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah) for heavier meats or real barbecue. $10.