South Africa continues to bring delightful chenin blanc to the table, and the new vintage of Spier Signature Chenin Blanc ($14) is a fine example. The crisp, clean palate is supported by plenty of exotic fruit. The winemaker notes indicate such things as guava and litchi, which might prove elusive to some of us, but certainly there are lovely peach and pear notes, and the acidity to assure both sipping pleasure and great food matches. It is easy to imagine how wonderful this wine can be with a pan-fried sole fillet, or even a salsa-laced grilled fresh trout. Summer, defined.
The Argentinian wine called Kaiken impresses every time. As it is part of the Montes family of wines, this should really not be any surprise. The Kaiken Reserva Especial Malbec ($14) is a bold, brightly-lit wine, bursting with fresh dark berry fruit, and layered elegantly in a nicely structured acidity and tannic firmness. Almost anything from the grill will work with this, but you might want a second bottle to work through a nice finishing cheese course as you ponder all the references in Stranger Things.
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