The screw-cap stigma is fading. Long identified with jug wine and worse, the screw cap is undergoing a change in image and a rise in popularity. Although a great Bordeaux or Barolo is unlikely to see a screw cap anytime soon, the switch in other regions is under way, especially in Australia and New Zealand.
For summertime practicality, the screw cap eliminates the need to tote that corkscrew to the picnic or the beach party. Here are five summery wines that require only a twist. Four come from Australia; one, Sonoma.
The 2009 Angoves Nine Lives ($13) delivers a rosé mouthful of fruit in a blend that's 70 percent grenache and 30 percent shiraz. Ideal with spicy food. The hot spots in the spice market won't faze the 2009 Pewsey Vale Eden Valley Dry Riesling ($18), a versatile varietal with brisk, lively style.
Peach and lemon notes highlight the soft 2009 Peter Lehmann Layers Adelaide White Table Wine ($16), a diverting, fruity blend of semillon, muscat, gewürztraminer, pinot gris and chardonnay. The 2008 Yangarra Estate McLaren Vale Shiraz ($20) offers a ripe, gutsy red to go with grilled meat.
Long Island's Wine of the Week
Well, mostly Long Island, and screw-capped: the fizzy 2009 Bouké Perlant ($17), a pinot trio blend of gris (from the Finger Lakes), blanc and noir (both local), fruity, slightly nutty, right with shellfish and salads.