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Summer entertaining

Al fresco hosting tips from
our Cellar specialists

Wine bottles
Waitrose Cellar wine specialists

"Becky, Andrew and I love nothing more than entertaining with a fabulous plate of food and delicious wine. Summer gives us the opportunity to unleash our creativity and indulge in the delicious synergy which comes from unique food and wine pairings.

If you're stuck for ideas on what to serve with your summer menu just get in touch by calling
03456 100 304, emailing or tweeting @waitrosewine. Whether it’s a lavish al fresco dinner party, or just a great value wine to bring along to a barbecue, we can help you find the perfect summer sip to suit your outdoor occasion."

Stéphane Sanchez
Cellar Specialist

White wine for al fresco dining

White wine is an all time favourite for summer sipping, especially coupled with a light fish dish. Perfect for those evenings when good weather affords you the luxury of sitting out in your back garden.

We suggest you stock up with Vasse Felix this summer; it went down a treat with wine fanatics and foodie fans alike at a Waitrose Cellar tasting evening. With some similarity to Marlborough Sauvignon, this also has an extra textural dimension from the Semillon and amazing purity of gooseberry and red apple fruit.

Try with seared scallops or any fish dish containing lemongrass.

Red wine for al fresco dining

Summer dishes often feature a juicy steak or pan fried chicken coupled with a light salad. It is for this very reason that the Stonier Pinot was extraordinarily popular at our Waitrose Cellar tasting evening.

This attractive, mid-weight, full-flavoured Pinot Noir was paired with chicken breast, pancetta, broad beans & herb mascarpone by Gordon McDermott, head chef at the Waitrose cookery school.

Picnic time

Nothing defines al fresco dining better than a picnic. Unleash your creativity with a rocket and parmesan salad coupled with sautéed mushrooms, chicken Yakitori, almonds and hazelnuts uniquely paired with a rich dry sherry like the La Concha Amontillado Sherry.

This somewhat unusual pairing was recommended to us by a foodie fanatic at a recent Waitrose Cellar tasting event and offers an unusual but pleasantly surprising pairing.

Perfect for Barbecues

Barbecues are often dominated by strong meats like steak and lamb burgers, so a big bold red can be the perfect finishing touch to your estimable barbecuing efforts. Try the award winning chateau segonzac from Bordeaux if the focus of your barbeque is tender steak or if you are looking for something to match both char grilled chicken and dark meats try the Reserve Shiraz St Hallett.

This wine was made in partnership with the renowned St Hallet winery and blended by one of our wine buyers, it is vibrant, bold and delicious; the perfect finishing touch to your char grilled endeavours.

Video: Heston's Fruit Cup cocktail

Hestons fruit cup

If you are hosting a large party this summer a refreshing punch is a must have. Watch our video for advise on how to produce a vibrant fruit cup cocktail.

Blended with elderflower, blackcurrant and raspberry liqueurs, infused with eight carefully selected botanicals. Hestons fruit cup has a fresh, light taste that will refresh everyone on a summer's day and the hint of Earl Grey makes this a truly British drink.