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Lighter wines for summer under £20: The whites

Peter Richards MW tasted 280 wines to pick the best for lighter summer drinking. Here are the white wines - apart from French ones, found here - that made the cut, all under £20 and below 12.5% abv...

Unsurprisingly, white wines made up around three-quarters of the 78 lighter wines for summer drinking, tasted by Peter Richards MW.

A deliberate decision was made to leave rosé wines out – but you can find plenty of our expert chosen rosé recommendations here. 

Whilst French white wines were the majority – and can be found here – there was still plenty of variety, seen in the more than 40 wines below.

‘Exactly what I was looking for: wines that were lovely. As I started the tasting, I pondered: what do we really want in a summer wine? Loveliness certainly. But there’s a lot more to it than that,’ said Richards.

‘In the idealised vision, summer is about warmth, holidays and alfresco eating. We reach for wines to slake our thirst, to refresh and revive our senses. For this, the best wines are fresh and invigorating in style – and those that show well even when chilled.’

The wines below showcase a variety of grapes and regions, from New Zealand, Italy and Australia, to choices from Germany, Slovenia and Hungary.

Get white wines chilling in the fridge, for plenty of time on particularly hot days, but take them out 10 minutes before serving.


Top lighter red wines for summer drinking

Top lighter French whites for summer drinking


Richards’ top lighter white wines for summer drinking:

See also:

Best summer reds to drink chilled

Lower alcohol wines for summer

Best Provence rosé under £20

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