Sea Slopes Chardonnay
Sea Slopes Chardonnay (courtesy photo)

The rain will stop at some point, but even if it doesn't, these summer wines will bring rainbows of delight to your table, as they did mine.

ATTEMS RAMATO PINOT GRIGIO 2017, Friuli, $9.95* —Note the asterisk in the price. Ramato sells for $19.95 but is on sale in New Hampshire to make way for the new vintage. It's the deal of the summer so far. Ramato has a distinctive "coppery" color that is mind-blowing to lovers of the traditional, translucent version. Longer contact between the grapes' purple-gray skins and the freshly pressed juice creates the pinkish tone. Extended maceration also lifts the aromatics, flavors and texture. Ramato is not a rose. It's a stylish still wine (12.5 percent alcohol) of precision. White peach, cantaloupe and bitter cherry traits harmonize with mellow acidity. It ends dry and joyous. If you want a Pinot Grigio of substance, this is the pick.

Swanson Vineyards Pinot Grigio 2018
Swanson Vineyards Pinot Grigio 2018 (courtesy photo)

SWANSON VINEYARDS PINOT GRIGIO 2018, Napa Valley, $21 — Here's a summer surprise, a California Pinot Grigio with a robust 14 percent alcohol that captures all the fresh fruit and verve of Italy's best varietals. Peach, melon and tropical fruit mix seamlessly with lively acidity to make this a great accompaniment for seafood appetizers. I particularly enjoyed the mouth-filling texture. Kudos to Scottish-born winemaker Robin Akhurst who joined Swanson's in 2015. This new release is available at several Boston Seaport District restaurants.


Attems Ramato Pinot Grigio 2017
Attems Ramato Pinot Grigio 2017 (courtesy photo)

SEA SLOPES CHARDONNAY 2016, Sonoma, $30; Sea Slopes Pinot Noir 2016 ($35) — South African natives Lester and Linda Schwartz defied the skeptics when they scratched out a virgin, 53-acre vineyard site along the Pacific Ocean's rocky coast to grow clonal blocks of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. That was 1988. Fort Ross Winery's majestic terroir has unearthed magnificent wines. Grapes mature slowly to build depth and character in the cool, sunny climate. Winemaker Jeff Pisoni takes a minimalist approach to keep things pure. The Chardonnay is elegant and balanced. Golden yellow-apple and citrus flavors unfold nicely with a touch of vanilla on the finish. While some over-oaked, buttery Chardonnays can tire out the palate, Sea Slopes' restraint brings out an endless summer of luscious fruit. This new release, however, is presently on the lam in Massachusetts and N.H. (order it at The good news is that its companion, Sea Slopes Pinot Noir 2016, is available up north and on sale ($27.99). The color is pretty -- dark plum with ruby streaks -- and the food-friendly wine issues a fragrant, edge-of-the-cliff sea breeze of fresh strawberries, cherries and wild herbs. (Note: Both wines landed on Wine Enthusiast's "Editor's Choice" lists with identical 92-point ratings.)

KELLEREI CANTINA TERLAN "TRADITION" PINOT BIANCO DOC 2017, Alto Adige, $17.99 — Italy's northernmost province is known for crafting gorgeous, cool-climate whites, and this is no exception. Vines grow on steep mountain slopes and valley floors that benefit from calming Mediterranean breezes and 300 days of annual sunshine. Put that Alpine freshness in a green-tinted bottle, pack in delicious ripe pear with apple orchard nuances, weave in subtle saline minerality, and that's a classic Pinot Bianco. Available at the Wine ConneXtion in North Andover.

Read Jim Campanini's wine blog at (Note to readers: I receive samples from wineries and producers and attend select tastings in the course of my wine education work. I only write about the wines that I believe to be pleasurable and of value to consumers. I do not engage in negative reviews for many reasons, the most important being that I could have received one "tainted" bottle among thousands produced. It happens. Furthermore, my review process is a purely subjective exercise based on my own palate preferences and those of several trusted colleagues who I seek out for their expertise on occasion. The below wines were tasted May 3-10. I purchased the Attems Ramato and Terlan Pinot Bianco in local stores out of my own interest in these unique wines; the rest are samples sent by distributors.)