The best wines for summer BBQs

Move over, beer—wine is the new beverage star of the barbeque this year. It may seem obvious to crack a couple of cold ones when you fire up the grill on a hot summer day, but who says a glass of wine isn't just as welcome? Grilled meats (even burgers and sausages) taste great alongside a refreshing glass of wine. Use the tips below as your go-to guide to pairing the perfect rosé, white, or red with whatever it is you're throwing on the grill.

Try Rosé at Your BBQ

Grilled Marinated Shrimp
Photo by Jennifer Baker

It's a common misconception that all rosé comes from the same grape—in fact, rosé can be made from many of the same grapes that your favorite reds are from.

Pair with: Its color may give it away, but this evermore popular pink wine's flavor profile is actually somewhere in between a light white and heavier red, perfect for pairing with grilled chicken, fish, or shellfish.

Best White Wines for a BBQ:


Greek Style Garlic Chicken Breast
Photo by Dianne

Pair with: This often oaky white is on the bolder side of the flavor scale for white wines, so it can stand up to meaty grillables, like chicken, but also pairs great with lighter foods like grilled seafood.


Curly-Q Grilled Sausages
Photo by Soup Loving Nicole

Pair with: On the sweeter side of white wines, Riesling is great for balancing smoky meats like sausage; but of course, like most white wines, it pairs nicely with a piece of grilled fish.

Pinot Grigio

Grilled Tilapia with Mango Salsa
Photo by mainemom2

Pair with: The lightest of the whites on this list, Pinot Grigio is a crisp refreshing white that pairs best with light fare like fish and shellfish.

Best Red Wines for a BBQ:

Cabernet Sauvignon

Savory Garlic Marinated Steaks
Photo by CookinBug
| Credit: CookinBug

Pair with: This full-bodied red goes best with bold flavors (it will overpower lighter ones), so it's perfect for grilled steak but also pairs well with grilled pork or a juicy grilled burger.

Pinot Noir

Rusty Chicken Thighs
Photo by KGora

Pair with: Lighter than most other reds, Pinot Noir harmonizes well with chicken (especially dark meat) but also stands out against bolder flavors like pork and burgers.


BBQ Teriyaki Pork Kabobs
Photo by Allrecipes Magazine

Pair with: Often described as "peppery," this full-bodied red, like Cabernet, shines next to bold flavors. Getting a little spicy on the grill? Reach for the Syrah, especially with pork, steak, or burgers.

Red Blend

Big Smokey Burgers
Photo by Christina

Pair with: Blends are sometimes considered "less-than" single-grape varities; however, blends allow for a more balanced flavor thanks to the mix of grapes. This also makes them more versatile—pair it with burgers and sausages or opt for a more classic red pairing like pork or steak.

Try it with: Big Smokey Burgers