It’s time to uncork the season of sun-soaked days and breezy evenings— summer is just around the corner! So we’ve compiled our ultimate guide to serving wine in summer, from chilling techniques that will cool your wines in a snap to choosing the best bottles to pair with backyard BBQs.
Q: Should wine be refrigerated?
A: Yes, wine can and should be refrigerated, especially during the summer months. Storing wine at a cooler temperature helps preserve its freshness. However, it’s important to note that not all wines need to be stored in the refrigerator. We recommend storing and serving reds at slightly warmer temperatures.
Q: Should wine be chilled?
What’s the best temperature for whites and reds?
A: Yes, certain wines benefit from being chilled before serving, especially white wines and rosés. The best temperature for serving whites and rosés is between 45 to 55°F (7 to 13°C). Meanwhile, red wines are typically served at a slightly cooler room temperature, around 60 to 65°F (15 to 18°C).
*Summer Serving Tip: Pop your bottle of Olema Pinot Noir or Cabernet Sauvignon into the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes to serve these wines a little colder for extra refreshment during hot summer days.
Q: How do you chill a wine quickly?
A: If you need to chill a bottle of wine quickly, there are a few methods you can try. One way is to wrap the bottle in a damp cloth and place it in the freezer for about 15 to 20 minutes. Another method is to fill a bucket or large container with ice and water, then add a handful of salt. Place the bottle in the mixture and rotate it occasionally. The salt lowers the freezing point of the water, which helps chill the wine faster. Alternatively, you can use a wine chiller or a rapid wine-cooling sleeve that can cool the wine within minutes.
Q: Can you drink red wine in the summer?
A: Absolutely! While red wines are often associated with colder months, they can still be enjoyed in the summer. Lighter-bodied red wines like the Olema Pinot Noir can be quite refreshing when served at a slightly cooler temperature. The key is to avoid heavily oaked or high-alcohol reds that may feel too heavy during hot weather.
Q: Which wines do you serve with BBQ?
A: BBQ foods can have robust flavors, so it’s essential to choose wines that can complement and stand up to those flavors. For grilled meats like steak or ribs, bold and full-bodied red wines like Cabernet Sauvignon are excellent choices. For grilled chicken or seafood, you can opt for a medium-bodied white wine such as Chardonnay or a bottle of the fruit-forward Olema Côtes de Provence Rosé.
Q: Which wines are best with hot dogs?
A: We’re so glad you asked. For classic hot dogs with ketchup and mustard, the refreshing and fruit-driven Olema Côtes de Provence Rosé is a great choice. (The acidity in the wine can cut through the richness of the condiments.) If you prefer a red wine, a light-bodied and juicy red like the Olema Pinot Noir can work well too.
*Feeling adventurous? Try the less-conventional pairing of Olema Sparkling Brut with a hot dog and side of potato salad or cheddar potato chips.
Don’t forget the wine! We’ve put together an Olema Wines of Summer Six-Pack with our favorite spring and summer wines, INCLUDING ice packs and 2-Day Shipping to avoid the stress of warm-weather shipping.
It’s a smile, it’s a kiss, it’s a glass of wine… it’s (ALMOST) summertime. And nothing says *summer* like crisp, chilled white wines and rosés perfect for sipping poolside or on the patio.
In honor of sunny days and alfresco sipping ahead, we’ve compiled our list of favorite products to take wines on-the-go; our must-have list for toting wines to the beach, picnics in the park, or over to a friend’s pool.
The Essentials: GoVino Glasses come in a variety of shapes and sizes for sparkling wine, whites, red wines and more. The flexible, shatterproof, BPA-free wine glasses are a must-have all year round, but especially for outdoor sipping in these warmer months.
Feelin’ Fancy? We’ll never say no to a Corkcicle Stemless cup. Stainless steel and insulated, these keep your chilled glass of wine cool for hours— looking great along the way with gorgeous designs. (Pro tip: the Corkcicle Classic Stemless in Rose Quartz is the perfect match for the Olema Provence Rosé).
For the Mountaineers: A Yeti Rambler with Yeti’s signature lid is made for what we’ve coined a “wine hike,” AKA a leisurely walk without *too* much elevation gain but beautiful views along the way— an ideal outdoor activity for sipping a glass of Sauvignon Blanc or sparkling wine.
For the Beach Party or Family Picnic: fill up the Corkcicle Bucket Cooler Bag with 3-4 bottles of wine, add cold packs or ice, and be on your merry way. We’re particular fans of the backpack straps that make carrying the cooler bag as ergonomic as a twist-off wine enclosure (we’re looking at you, Olema Sauv Blanc).
For the Whole Package – a foldable wine picnic table with space for a bottle and four wine glasses solves the problem of where to set your wine + cheese board… though if you choose to wedge your bottle and wine glass in the sand at the beach along with your toes, there’s no judgment here.
Don’t forget the wine! We’ve put together an Olema Wines of Summer Six-Pack with our favorite spring and summer wines, INCLUDING ice packs and 2-Day Shipping to avoid the stress of warm-weather shipping.
We’ve gathered up our list of favorite iconic rom-coms and femme fatale performances— and found the perfect Olema wine pairing for each. So pull up your favorite streaming site and pour yourself a glass!
“Please, bore someone else with your questions.” – The Devil Wears Prada + Pinot Noir
Complex. Chic. High-fashion: all ways to describe the iconic supervillain Miranda Priestly… and the Olema Pinot Noir. Plus, we can all agree that Pinot Noir has to be what’s in Miranda’s glass at the end of a long day: the light-bodied and ultra-layered grape variety is easily the Prada of the wine world.
“On Wednesdays we wear pink.”
– Mean Girls + Rosé
Get in, losers – we’re drinking rosé. On the outside, it may look simple: an appealing glass of pale pink wine; a perfectly put-together early-2000s outfit and plastic tiara. But beneath the surface, the Plastics are a lot more complex, like a thoughtfully crafted Olema Côte de Provence Rosé, with just the right balance of vibrancy and fruit-forwardness.
“I’ll have what she’s having.” When Harry Met Sally + Cabernet Sauvignon
The King of Grapes (Cabernet Sauvignon) is the perfect match for the Queens of Rom Coms: Nora Ephron and Meg Ryan (with honorable mention to Carrie Fisher in her iconic best friend role). Bold and powerful, yet not without suave sultriness and effortless grace.
– How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days + Crémant de Loire Sparkling Brut
Manipulative mind-games aside, a glass of bubbly is the perfect match for those days when you just want to throw on a yellow floor-length evening gown and belt out “You’re So Vain.” Effervescent and as dazzling as a gazillion-karat diamond necklace, the Olema Sparkling Brut makes every day a celebration – even those 10 days when you’re trying to further your career while intentionally sabotoging a relationship.
“As if!” – Chardonnay + Clueless
Chardonnay is the Cher Horowitz of white wines: approachable and fruit-forward with just the right amount of zippy acidity— something you can’t help but love (even if their reputations do get scrutinized on occasion).
In this first post in our Olema FAQs series, we’re tackling one of our most frequently asked questions: how do wine clubs work?
The beautiful thing about wine clubs is their variety. Even within the Olema wine club lineup, we have a range of options to suit your preference on wines, delivery frequency, and quantities.
Which club is right for you?
Subscription clubs are for those who want to receive Olema wines in regular increments throughout the year. How often? That’s up to you! We have both quarterly and monthly club options, so you can receive wine four times a year OR once a month.
For both monthly and quarterly subscription clubs, we have both 6- and 12-bottle options, and with every shipment, you have the option to skip. Cancel anytime – no commitment required and no questions asked! Six-bottle shipments average $120 each + $5 flat-rate shipping; 12-bottle shipments average $240 + $10 flat-rate shipping. Learn more and sign up on our website here.
One-Cent Shipping Club
One of the hardest parts of the wine-ordering experience is shipping. Wine shipping gets expensive very quickly due to the weight of the package and the distance it needs to travel. So we sat down and came up with a plan: what if you could pay a single flat rate once and get free shipping all year long? Enter the One-Cent Shipping Club: you pay $75 once, and on all future orders for an entire year, you’ll receive an automated shipping discount so you only pay a penny in shipping per order. If you’re an Olema fan who wants to choose your own wines on your own time, the One-Cent Shipping Club is the perfect fit for you.
Negroni Sbagliato… this classic Italian cocktail has taken over social media— and we’ve put our own Olema spin on it with a splash of Olema Sparkling Brut in place of Prosecco! So channel your inner Emma D’Arcy and pour yourself a glass! *Stunning.*
Ingredients & Directions:
In a wine glass or cocktail shaker, add 1 part campari, 1 part sweet vermouth, and 1 part Olema Sparkling Brut. Add ice, garnish with an orange slide, and enjoy!
Shop this Sip:
Use code NEGRONI to receive shipping included!
A deliciously crisp sparkling wine made in the traditional style. Dry with vibrant acidity and a round mouthfeel, the Olema Sparkling Brut features flavors of apple, pear, honeysuckle and pastry dough through the nose and palate with a bright, clean finish
The season of giving has arrived! Looking for the perfect gift for friends, family, coworkers and clients? We’ve got you covered with the Olema Holiday Gift Collection. Wine gifts for every palate, at every price point, and all with shipping included.
Read on for our recommendations on what to gift this year—and use code OLEMAGIFTS to save 15% on your gift order this year!
For your bestie – Olema Double Bubbles Duo
Individually, the Olema sparkling wines are festive and fun; together, they’re the ultimate celebratory pair. Both hail from France’s Loire Valley and are made in the traditional champagne method, with secondary fermentation occuring in each bottle to result in perfect effervescence in every sip. Pair with holiday hors d’oeuvres or your New Year’s caviar.
For the coworkers – Olema Essentials Duo
Refreshing, lively Côtes de Provence rosé and complex, robust Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon: it’s a duo that checks every box for your wine-loving coworker (or even the boss). Plus, the numbers don’t lie: both of these wines receive 90+ reviews year after year.
For the Francophile – Olema Best of France Duo
We have the distinct pleasure to make multiple wines from France each year, flying our winemakers across the pond to join in on the harvest and blending in both Côtes de Provence in southern France and the Loire Valley, north of Bordeaux. The result are wines that nod to the old world style while delivering outstanding value and drinkability here in the US. Cin cin!
For your in-laws – Olema Core Four
Sometimes the best gifts are the ones that can be opened—and enjoyed— during the family White Elephant party. With a bottle each of Olema Rosé, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon, there’s something for everyone… even the most particular names on your nice list.
Harvest 2022 for Olema Wines is coming to a close—so we wanted to take you behind the scenes and into the cellar for a peek at a day in the life of Olema harvest. It starts in the vineyard…
We start many harvest days, and days leading up to harvest, with crisp early mornings at the vineyards. Beginning in late summer, we’re sampling grapes—picking a representative sample of grapes and clsuters to bring them back to the winery to test sugar levels and acidity to determine when it’s time to pick. Actual picking days may start even earlier, with night picks beginning anytime between 11pm and 3am to get the fruit back to the winery bright and early.
Time for fruit processing at the winery! In other words, this is the first step in the winemaking process, moving the grapes from their picking bins, over the sorting table, into the destemmer, and into a fermentation tank.
9:00 am – 12:00 pm
After fruit processing, our harvest mornings are filled up with pumpovers, measuring fermentations to test their sugar levels and see how far along the fermentation process they are, and cleaning, cleaning, and more cleaning!
Pumpovers, just as the name suggests, mean pumping the juice from the bottom of the tank and pour it back over the top of the fermenter. This extracts flavor and tannins from the grape skins, imparting beautiful complexity into the wine.
12:00 pm – Lunch!
…Just kidding, we eat more than just grapes (but wine grapes ARE particularly delicious…)
1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Afternoons are spent with more pumpovers, pressing, digging out tanks, and cleaning, cleaning, and more cleaning to wrap up work for the day ahead! Because we source from vineyards all around Sonoma County and have three different varietals (Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon), we might have some lots of grapes coming in the door while others are midway through fermentation and others are fully fermented and ready to be drained out of tank. The wine goes into barrel, and we get to dig all the pommace (fermented grape skins) out of the tank and clean it thoroughly to get it ready for the next lot of wine. It’s a dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it!
Dinner as a crew to toast to a great day and watch a beautiful Wine Country sunset as we prepare for the next day ahead.
With some late summer heat waves in California to kick off September and the 2022 Olema harvest in full swing, we’re looking ahead to some beautiful fall weather — and all the flavors that come with it. So we’ve gathered a few of our favorite fall recipes from around the web. What wines pair best with fall flavors? We’ve got you covered with wine recommendations for fall below.
Autumn Chopped Salad from Espresso & Cream with the Sonoma County Chardonnay or Olema Rosé Reserve. This salad captures the flavors of fall in a delicious, filling dish. The pear and bacon complement the Sonoma County Chardonnay beautifully while the vinaigrette and cranberries add a tartness that contrasts the wine’s smoothness. Or for a more complementary pairing, the Olema Reserve Rosé creates cranberry bliss with the salad.
Serious Eats Butternut Squash Risotto + Olema Reserve Chardonnay. Butternut squash is one of our go-to ingredients to match the richness of the Reserve Chardonnay. This, plus the Golden Delicious apple and savory miso in the recipe make this a perfect complementary pairing: the flavors in the wine perfectly match the flavors in the dish. Tip: the recipe calls for a half cup of white wine– a great role for a glass of your open bottle of Reserve Chardonnay if you can spare it; if not, go for 4 oz of the Sonoma County Chardonnay.
Nothing beats a roast chicken over a pan of mouth-watering veggies. Don’t miss the Change-Your-Life Chicken from the Lazy Genius paired with the Olema Pinot Noir. There’s just something about roast chicken and Pinot Noir. The wine’s acidity cuts through the richness of the chicken, while the dish’s fat softens the Pinot Noir’s tannins and creates blissful harmony on the palate. Pair with a crackling fireplace.
Slow Cooker Red Wine Sunday Ragù Pasta from Half-Baked Harvest + Olema Cabernet Sauvignon. This crowd-pleasing dish is rich and savory, making for a beautiful pairing with the Olema Cabernet Sauvignon (which also adds lovely flavor to the dish itself, if you have a second bottle on hand– the recipe calls for 1 ¼ cup dry red wine, or about two glasses). Beef short ribs cooked in any form pair wonderfully with the Olema Cabernet Sauvignon, with fattiness that cuts through the wine’s tannins. The wine’s bold fruit notes can stand up to the savoriness in the dish– all together, it’s a match made in fall-flavor heaven.
… or as we like to say, chardon-yay. The most versatile of grape varieties, this white wine grape is one of the most popular wines for a reason. It’s the most widely planted white grape variety in California (over 93,000 acres as of the 2018 California grape acreage report!) and can be made in every style imaginable, from a crisp, bright, stainless-steel fermented wine to a rich, mouth-filling wine laden with oak flavors.
It’s no secret that we’re big fans of Chardonnay at Olema Wines— and it was our passion for the grape that led us to make not only our Olema Sonoma Chardonnay, but to expand to our Olema Chardonnay Reserve in 2017. We sat down with our winemaker to talk through the differences between the two wines and to share what we love so much about making this delicious grape variety.
“Chardonnay can go in so many different directions,” says Associate Winemaker Dante West, “and with this Chardonnay we’re trying to craft a wine that’s very fruit-driven with richness, yellow flowers on the nose, ripe stone fruits… this is a wine that’s going to appeal to a lot of different people but stays true to what Chardonnay is in Sonoma County.”
Beginning 2017, we’ve had the opportunity to work with incredible Sonoma County vineyards. So, we pursued making a second wine: one that shows another side of Chardonnay. A little richer, more unctuous and forward, the reserve Chardonnay jumps out of the glass. Flavors of caramelized fruit and apricot combine with vanilla and custard notes. The Reserve Chardonnay is made with about 50% new oak, while the Sonoma Chardonnay is closer to 25-30% each year.
Whether you lean towards bright, crisp Chardonnays or richer and luscious, we’ve got the wine for you.
Sauvignon Blanc is all about acidity and freshness, making it the perfect wine to kick off a summer party OR to take center stage for summer get-togethers. A picnic in the park or an alfresco girls’ night in with Sauv Blanc + a bountiful charcuterie board? There’s nothing better.
Smooth yet bright Chardonnay with just the right balance of crispness and richness means the Chardonnay Reserve pairs beautifully with shrimp or veggies fresh off the grill. The hint of char from the grill brings out the textural elements in the wine, and the pop of the grilled dish is the ideal match for Chardonnay’s unique acid profile.
Pinot Noir and salmon is one of the iconic wine pairings, defying the myth that red wine can’t pair with seafood. The juiciness and red fruits in the Pinot Noir make it a great match for salmon, especially coming off the barbecue in summertime. Tip: chill your Pinot Noir for 15-30 minutes in the refrigerator before serving. Slightly chilled = perfect for warmer weather.
Yes, S’mores. Whether gourmet dark chocolate or the classic Hershey’s milk chocolate bar (or the adventurers who opt for a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup instead), pairing Cab with summer’s signature fireside dessert is the way to go. Chocolate and Cabernet Sauvignon is an iconic pairing for a reason. Add graham cracker and a few ‘mallows, and the result is *chef’s kiss*.
Real talk: Rosé is THE wine for summer. Pack your rosé and a couple GoVino wine glasses in a cooler with ice and pair with beach day for the ultimate summertime wine experience. Be the first to try our NEW 2021 Olema Rosé!
GIVEAWAY! Enter to Win the Summer Wine Essentials
This prize includes:
(1) bottle of 2021 Olema Provence Rosé
(1) bottle of 2020 Olema Sauvignon Blanc
(2) GoVino Wine Glasses
(1) VacuVin Wine Chiller
(1) Picnic basket bag
(1) Picnic blanket
With lively bubbles and great acidity, sparkling wines is the perfect wine for springtime. What to pair with sparkling wines? We love this crémant with a triple-crème cheese, salty snacks, or chilled on its own as a late-afternoon sipper.
If there was such a thing as the birthplace of spring, it would be France’s Côtes de Provence region. In the spring and summer, lavender flourishes across the landscape as the buds in the vineyard burst. And with every sip of the Olema Côtes de Provence Rosé, you can practically hear Vivaldi’s “Spring.” Think fresh strawberry, watermelon and citrus notes that go on and on with every sip.
Fact: Sauvignon Blanc and Spring are simply made for each other. The ultimate white wine for warm weather, Sauvignon Blanc has enough zip to be absolutely delicious chilled down, while also complex enough to please the white wine fanatics in your life. Best sauvignon blanc pairings? In our humble opinions: go with a goat’s cheese and arugula salad, stone fruits, or spring pea and ricotta pasta dishes.
Densely layered with bright fruit flavors, Pinot Noir – particularly slightly chilled – makes for an amazing spring wine. Pinot Noir pairs well with everything from barbecue chicken or shrimp all the way to heartier dishes and even dessert. Searching for the ultimate red wine for spring? Look no further.
Not too hot; not too cold – while spring soirees are the perfect time to break out the ice bucket and chill down your wines, avoid chilling your wines down to ice-cold levels, as temperatures below 45 degrees starts to mute the wines’ flavor profile. Chill in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours or store in a wine fridge between 45-50 degrees.
The quick-chill method – short on time? Wet a cloth or paper towel and wrap it around your wine bottle, then pop it into the freezer for 10 minutes. Voila!
Ice bucket hacks – always add water to your ice bucket! This creates a cold enough environment to chill your wine, but avoids the main challenge with ice buckets: too much ice and not enough space for the wine. Tip: put your wine bottles in first, then add ice, then top with water.
We’re firm believers that every season is rosé season. From goat cheese and arugula salad in the spring to grilled salmon in the summer, and from fried chicken in the fall to festive apps during the holidays, there’s always an occasion to uncork a bottle of crisp, fruit-driven and perfectly balanced rosé.
To make the most classic style of rosé, we went straight to the source: France’s Côtes de Provence region. Today, we have two unique representations of the dazzling pale pink wine. our Olema Rosé and Rosé Reserve. The wines are composed of the same provençal blend of varieties, but made in slightly different styles to showcase two representations of rosé. The Olema Rosé features fresh strawberry and watermelon rind aromas that lead into flavors of white peach, Meyer lemon and hints of jasmine on the palate. The Rosé Reserve is a slightly richer style, with more weight on the palate and flavors driven by juicy ripe peach, ripe strawberry and hints of honeysuckle.
Which Rosé is the Rosé for You?
We sat down with our winemaking team for the rosé lowdown, and here’s what they had to say:
“The Olema Rosé Reserve has more complexity and richness across the palate.”
– Winemaker Tony Biagi
“Both wines have similar aroma and flavor profiles, but the Rosé Reserve shows more intensity.”
– Assistant Winemaker Dante West
…but we’re not about to make you choose between two good things. Use code ROSEALLDAY to receive $10 flat-rate shipping on any 12+ bottles. Mix and match the Olema Rosé and Olema Rosé Reserve, or add in any other favorite wines on our online wine store to build a mixed case.
How to Serve Rosé?
We recommend chilling your Olema Rosés to a little cooler than celler temperature. Pop into your refrigerator an hour or two before serving, or use the wet paper towel trick (wrap your wine bottle in a wet paper towel and stick it in your freezer for 15 minutes).
Looking for the ultimate wine cocktail? Look no further: this Cranberry Wine Spritz is our go-to way to elevate this classic drink. The secret is to start with a delicious white wine that doesn’t break the bank. The more refreshing acidity, the better.
Ingredients & Directions:
In a wine glass or cocktail shaker, pour a half-glass (3oz) white wine – we recommend the Olema Sauvignon Blanc – along with a splash of ginger ale and a splash of cranberry juice over ice. Stir or shake, and add fresh or frozen cranberries. Cheers!
Shop this Sip:
Use code SPRITZ to receive shipping included on your order of Olema Sauvignon Blanc!
The 2021 vintage in France’s northwestern wine country was unlike any other. Growers battled frost in April, followed by a rainy spring and a hot, dry summer. Despite these challenges, the vines persevered and produced healthy fruit showing lovely acidity. Resulting wines have great depth of flavor and concentration on the palate. We are extremely excited about the quality of the 2021 vintage and cannot wait to share it.