There’s still plenty of summer left, which means there are plenty of warm days and trips to the beach to cool out and cool off. Nothing says "beach day" like a tote bag filled with snacks, a good beach read, and great wine. We're here for it. But, first things first. What is a beach read?
According to The Guardian, the term "beach read" first appeared in 1990 and was used as a marketing tool by publishers looking to promote easy to read, but compelling page turners in genres such as romance, mystery/thriller, and contemporary fiction. Beach reads are, by nature, captivating, even gulpable — an escape from reality while you, the reader, are escaping reality at the beach.
Almost any book can be considered a beach read, especially during summer. Whether a book is considered a beach read, is largely up for interpretation. Pairing a book with a beach trip is a lot like wine pairing in that way. With that in mind, we're pairing three of our favorite wines this season with some of our favorite reads.
Set in North Carolina during the summer, this is a rom-com lover's dream. Literary agent Nora Stephens and her sister, Libby, are on a sisters’ trip with visions of becoming the heroine of her own story. Perhaps through a summer fling? Instead Nora is constantly bumping into Charlie Lastra, a brooding editor that she’s bumped into plenty of times before, usually disastrously. However, this time, on this summer getaway, Nora and Charlie get to know each other in ways they never would have thought possible. Young and seductive, Uivo "Curtido" Pet Nat 2021 is the perfect literary libation for this novel. Organic, bubbly, with just a touch of skin-contact, this wine is produced from Moscatel Galego, and offers notes of ripe tropical fruit, wild flowers and delicate acidity.
This French rosé, is as great for the beach as it is for lazy afternoons in Prospect Park, one of the settings in this page-turning psychological thriller about a missing newborn. The set-up is simple: a group of new mothers whose children were all born in May get together for a mom's night out. When they return, one of the babies is missing. A heart-pounding search leads to revealed secrets and destroyed friendships. French Pool Toy is fun, bright, and fruity, with crisp notes of ripe strawberries, cherry blossoms, and a hint of citrus, the perfect refreshment for a book whose pages leave you thirsting for more. Bottled in BPA-free, recycled plastic, French Pool Toy wines have some of the lowest carbon footprints in all of France. It's pretty easy to fall in love with this one.
This cool and funky novel by Korean author Gu Beyong-Mo, about a 65-year-old female assassin who becomes emotionally compromised after an injury, is a killer match -- pun intended -- for this chillable Portuguese red. Made from 100% Baga, the wine has notes of strawberries, dried roses, earth, and a hint of spice. It's surprisingly delicious, with a memorable finish, just like this story, which exposes the challenges of aging even as it explores how one woman chooses to reclaim her agency.