It's that time of the year, folks...the time for the cave men amongst us to fire up the barbecue. Yeah, barbie food is rarely very good and the best bit about the event is generally the wine, but what should you pair with carcinogenic burgers, undercooked chicken and tortured shrimp?

Thankfully, as the food really is that bad, you don't need to worry about pairing wines, just go for something you like or something you haven't tried before because barbecues really are an occasion to throw caution to the wind.

If you're going to your inlaws' barbecue and want to play it safe, there's a plethora of soft teddy bear cuddly merlots but the better all rounder is zinfandel, particularly the Californians if reds float their boat.

If they prefer the lighter stuff, aim for a crisp, refreshing chardonnay, or better still, a classic pinot grigio. The latter got an unfortunate reputation as cheap and cheerful because there were so many on the shelves in the old three for a tenner aisle but if you aim just a tad higher there are some absolute corkers these days.

Italy is still the natural place to look for a pinot grigio but, in recent years, the Aussies have mastered the grape and it seems to adore their climate. I've tasted quite a few and it seems to me that the Aussie versions are about two thirds the price of comparable quality Italians. It's not just the cost that's different; the fruit is as well. The classic peach and pear-style fruits are still there but they are so much more evident and far less shy.

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Botham All Rounder Pinot Grigio

I was never much into cricket but I've become a big fan of all Sir Ian's wines and this is one of my favourites. It's got a generous, welcoming nose leading into a palate of soft pears, crisp acidity and a hint of freshly-cut apples on the finish. Absolutely gorgeous for the price. £8

Cranswick Estate Selection Chardonnay

If there was ever to be a competition for the description of a quintessential chardonnay, this cracking wine would be right up there. Refreshing citrus flavours, lashings of vanilla oak and a hint of lime on the finish. Really lovely.

Oddbins £13