The first day of summer has arrived and now is the time for warm, breezy evenings and lazy summer afternoons filled with good food and wine.Here are two rich, smooth and great value reds from Tuscany to enhance your summertime.

Made with 85% Sangiovese, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot, Monte Antico Toscana IGT 2015 (SRP $14) is a red with all the classic Tuscan seductiveness including delicious fruit, velvety, extract-fraught texture, full body, beautiful finish and superb balance. Your reader will be seduced by its complex aromas of leather, earth, herbs, black cherries, licorice and plums. Round, spicy, elegant, extremely versatile and pocket friendly.  A perfect all-around food wine to match first courses, red and white meats, burgers and cheeses. The best of the best is chosen during the vinification of sangiovese, merlot and cabernet sauvignon. Its grapes come from historical vineyard sites in the heart of Chianti Classico and the Maremma, on Tuscany’s coast. Supremus is complex, harmonious and full of finesse. Its wonderful flavors speak volumes of its terroir and of Tuscany’s noble Sangiovese grape. Monte Antico, which means “ancient mountain,” is Neil and Maria Empson’s wholehearted tribute to Tuscany, the region they love so deeply. A true Tuscan classic! Available online on Vivino.

Lucente Toscana IGT 2016 (SRP $30) is the second wine of Tenuta Luce’s flagship wine, a 50% Sangiovese – 50% Merlot blend with contemporary style, immediate and great pleasure, and like its older sibling, an authentic interpretation of Montalcino and the Tenuta Luce estate. With its deep, brilliant ruby color, Lucente impresses for the cleanliness and intensity of its wild berry and jam bouquet, with highlights of tobacco light spices and a delicate toasted note. Measured, silky tannins provide a wonderful roundness and a persistent finish. Pairs well with barbecue, red meat roasts, prime ribs, pepper steaks and sausages. The grapes are carefully selected to yield a wine with a contemporary flair, reflective of its distinctive terroir. The wine matures for 12 months in the barrel room at the Luce della Vite estate in Montalcino and is then bottled in the cellar there. Lovely! Available online on Vivino.

Cynthia Calvert
Author: Cynthia CalvertEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
A trained journalist with a masters degree from Lamar University, a masters from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, as well as extensive coursework toward a masters of science in psychology from the University of New Orleans, Calvert founded the Tribune Newspapers in 2007. Her experiences as an investigative, award winning reporter (She won Journalist of the Year from the Houston Press Club among many other awards for reporting and writing), professor and chair of the journalism department for Lone Star College-Kingwood and vice president of editorial for a large group of community weeklies provides her with a triple dose of bankable skills that cover every aspect of the journalism field. Solid reporting. Careful interviews. Respect and curiosity for people and places.

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