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4 Easy, No-Cook Summer Meals with Classic Wine Pairings

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There comes a point in summer when it’s so hot we barely want to cook. But our desire to spend time with friends outweighs that instinct, so we invite them over anyway.

Each of these easy-to-prepare, no-cook recipes can be served as an appetizer or as a main course paired with chilled summer-ready wines.

Illustration by Natalia Sanabria

Zucchini “Pasta” with Pesto

Spiralized Zucchini + Pesto (Basil Leaves, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Olive Oil, Lemon Juice, Salt & Pepper)

Pair with New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc

It takes a high-acid wine to hold up to basil’s intensity when joined by zesty lemon juice—and Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand fills the bill. Zippy flavors of grapefruit, white peach, lychee, and passion fruit are often coupled with green herbaceous notes that are sometimes compared to fresh-cut basil.

Illustration by Natalia Sanabria

Caprese Salad

Mozzarella + Basil + Tomato + Olive Oil

Pair with Friulano

Hailing from northern Italy’s Friuli-Venezia Giulia, this variety has intense flavors of citrus, white peach and apple with touches of green herb and bitter almond. Strong minerality is ideal with fresh summer tomatoes, as is a full body that will hold up to creamy mozzarella. The wine’s rich fruit flavors are bold enough for even the sharpest summer basil.

Illustration by Natalia Sanabria

Niçoise Salad

Mesclun + Tinned Tuna + Olives + Hard Boiled Eggs + Green Beans + Dijon Vinaigrette

Pair with Provençal Rosé

Rosé wines from the South of France can be beautifully complex. They provide the full body we love in red wines, which is superb with protein-rich tuna and eggs. They are also bright with refreshing flavors of citrus fruits, strawberries and cherries and touches of dried herbs—a foolproof accompaniment to briny olives and tangy dressing

Illustration by Natalia Sanabria