I was recently introduced to a delicious, new [to me] type of Italian red wine: Niades Brachetto d'Acqui.
What's so special about it? It's sparkling!
That's right - a sparkling red. It was my first. And it is perfect on a hot summer night, when traditional reds are a bit too heavy. It's actually a dessert wine - delicious with chocolate, and also recommended as an accompaniment to fresh fruit like strawberries.
The wine itself is sweet like cherries; it reminds me a lot of Port. Its name derives from the Brachetto grape, from the Acqui district of the Piedmont region of Italy.
Chowhound lists some local shops where Niades Brachetto d'Acqui may be purchased for about $17. Don't forget the chocolates.