Wine

Whether grabbed as a gift on the go or as a delicately chosen offering for a connoseiur, there is a wine to fit every occasion and palate.

Our Favorite Wines to Gift

Our Favorite Wines to Gift

When choosing a wine, it is best to remember to importance of the season and the food pairings. With that in mind, we have chosen a few of our favorite varieties to help you narrow down your selections.

2008 Spring Seed Wine Company Four O'Clock Chardonnay

2008 Spring Seed Wine Company Four O'Clock Chardonnay

This is an organic offering from Australia's McLaren Vale. Since it's unoaked, it retains a crisp, natural acidity; stone fruit and citrus flavors shine through.

Price: $13

Gunderloch 2007 Riesling Kabinett Jean-Baptiste

Gunderloch 2007 Riesling Kabinett Jean-Baptiste

Gunderloch 2007 Riesling Kabinett Jean-Baptiste reveals bright acidity, floral notes, and a hint of minerals in the aroma. Sweet fruit flavors and a slight bitterness provide perfect balance for many spring dishes.

Price: $16

2007 Gabbiano Chianti Classico

2007 Gabbiano Chianti Classico

2007 Gabbiano Chianto Classico has a floral aroma that's laced with a nice little funk. The flavor is all peppercorn spice, cherries, and blackberries with enough tannins to give it structure. Serve this jammy wine with tomato-based soups and stews and classic pasta dishes like spaghetti and meatballs and lasagna.

Price: $13

Navarro Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc

Photo: Randy Mayor

Navarro Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc

When 90° temps stretch well into the evening, here’s a superb hot-summer sipper that’s great served solo or with supper: light, crisp Navarro Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc from Mendocino. Round with pleasant notes of pear and melon, but also has enough refreshing acidity to pair well with fish and shellfish. 

Price: $18

Tupun Torrontés

Photo: Randy Mayor

Tupun Torrontés

If you think most white wines are boring—thin and acidic, or loud and oak-sweet—here’s the cure: Tupun Torrontés. The rising-star torrontes grape is almost exclusive to Argentina. Peachy, floral flavors tango with crisp citrus notes, making this a superb summer wine, with food or just for sipping.

Price: $10

Mumm Napa Brut Rose

Photo: Randy Mayor

Mumm Napa Brut Rosé

French-style bubbly that bursts with California fruit: Mumm Napa Brut Rosé (NV) is a delightful sparkler. Strawberries dominate the aroma, but the flavor is a complex blend of fruit and vanilla balanced by tart citrus and rich, round yeasty notes. Fabulous served solo, or pairs well with foods like salad or crispy chicken.

Price: $19

Gunderloch 2007 Riesling Kabinett Jean-Baptiste

Gunderloch 2007 Riesling Kabinett Jean-Baptiste

Sauvignon blanc is a refreshing way to toast spring. Mount Nelson 2009 Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand boasts grapefruit flavor with a kiss of lime and enough sweetness to balance.

Price: $16

Paul Jaboulet Aine Parallele 45 Blanc

Paul Jaboulet Ainè Parallèle 45 Blanc

Like most Côtes du Rhône wines, 2008 Paul Jaboulet Ainè Parallèle 45 Blanc is a blend. The wine owes its fruity flavor to the small percentage of viognier, but grenache blanc gives it body and crisp acidity.

Price: $12

Layer Cake 2008 Malbec

Layer Cake 2008 Malbec

For an affordable red with hints of vanilla, jammy dark fruit, and a lightly smoky finish, try Layer Cake 2008 Malbec. Pair it with braised lamb or poulty like duck with fruit sauce.

Price: $15

Hayman & Hill Pinot Noir Reserve Selection 41 Santa Lucia Highlands 2008

Hayman & Hill Pinot Noir

This selection has rich eath and smoke in the nose, but the flavor is unexpectedly fruity, redolent of dried cherries and currants up front and balanced by a nice acidity. A tasty pinot noir that's under $20—now that's a find!

Price: $17

Castillo de Fuenmayor Rioja Gran Familia

Castillo de Fuenmayor Rioja Gran Familia

Rioja rules in Spain, and Gran Familia from Castillo de Fuenmayor is a terrific wine for the price point. It's spicy with a touch of must on the nose and a fruity, cherry flavor.

Price: $13

Marcel Deiss Pinot Blanc Bergheim

Marcel Deiss Pinot Blanc Bergheim

Marcel Deiss Pinot Blanc Bergheim is ripe with peach aromas, but tart citrus notes and a mineral quality keeps it from being cloying. Even with its full body and almost oaky finish, we still recommend this as a lovely summer sipper.

Price: $20

Aveleda Fonte 2008 Vinho Verde

Aveleda Fonte 2008 Vinho Verde

With citrus and green apple flavors and mild effervescence, Aveleda Fonte 2008 Vinho Verde is quite possibly the best $7 wine you'll find. It's a good sipper, but food-friendly, too.

Price: $7

Conde de Valdemar Crianza 2004 Rioja

Photo: Randy Mayor

Conde de Valdemar Crianza 2004 Rioja

We tasted this selection against tempranillo-based wines up to twice the price; this one hits the flavor-value bull's-eye. Among its qualities: lots of cherry fruit, some vanilla and spicie. Good acidity and a nice round mouthfeel make this a versatile red.

Price: $12

 

Clos La Coutale 2008

Clos La Coutale 2008

Affordable French red wine? Oui! Clos La Coutale 2008 ($14) is a bargain blend of malbec and merlot from Cahors in the southwest corner of France. Dark and tannic, as most malbecs are, but balanced with plummy fruit from the merlot. Finishes with rich dark chocolate. Enjoy it now with beef or duck.

Price: $14

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