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What Should I Drink with a July Fourth Picnic Plate?

Photo by Randy Mayor; food styling by Kellie Gerber Kelley; prop styling by Claire Spollen

A REFRESHING, CITRUSY BEER Good picnic beers need balanced flavors to complement foods yet still refresh. Check out summer beers, which offer more flavor and body than traditional lagers. Lightly hopped with citrus overtones, they're dangerously easy to drink. Sierra Nevada, Summerfest, California ($1.50/bottle or can) 

A ROBUST, DRY ROSÉ Refreshing and superversatile, rosé is the perfect summer sipper. Pale pink rosés are delicious, but heavier varieties will satisfy both red and white wine palates. Look for crisp, deeper-hued versions made from cabernet, syrah, or mourvèdre. Serve well chilled. Mulderbosch, Cabernet Sauvignon Rosé, South Africa, 2013 ($13)

OOPS! Avoid heavy red wines like petite sirah, zinfandel, and cabernet sauvignon, as warm weather will exacerbate high alcohol levels and grippy tannins.  —Jordan Mackay