By Maggie Walters
I'm back again for another round of What a Wine Geek Drinks on a Budget (check out Volume 1 and Volume 2). You know the drill: I pick a handful of wines, the budget is $15 and the quality is very good. It's a tough job, but someone has to do it!
This edition is going to be very summer influenced; we're talking porch pounders, refreshing whites to drink by the pool and reds to go with the grill!
Mont Gravet Cotes de Gascogne – SAUVIGNON BLANC
Hidden gem alert! Sometimes I'm afraid to share this wine with too many people for fear that the wine disappears off the shelf too quickly. If you enjoy Sauvignon Blanc, this is definitely one to add to your repertoire for the summer. It’s 100% Colombard with juicy pineapple and citrus fruit on the sip. A very dry finish, ripe and luscious, it’s uncomplicated but thoroughly appreciated in the summer heat! (Don't forget the sunscreen.)
Louis Jadot Beaujolais Villages
Not to be confused with the nouveau bubblegum reminiscent wine that is released every November, this light easy drinking red is ideal for summer. This wine originates from the south of Burgundy, France where it is consumed at picnics with BBQ (can't argue with that!). Think big strawberry profile balanced with refreshing acidity and a hint of minerality.
Shannon Ridge Petit Sirah
This is my go-to big protein grill wine!! Nothing says summer like throwing on burgers, brats, steak, etc. on the grill. This wine expresses big and bold flavors of dark fruit, black pepper, and toasted oak. I think something magical happens when the grill incorporates smokey flavors into your food and is paired with a smokey wine.
La Gioiosa Valdobbiadene Superiore Di Cartizze
A summer wine feature isn't complete without some bubbles. They're so fun and refreshing, and at this price you don't have to wait for a special occasion to crack open a bottle. This bottle of Prosecco is from a leading producer in Italy and produces some top quality wine. This wine in particular is from a Miro region (Valdobbiadene Superiore Di Cartizze) that is considered to be the most renowned soil in the area for grape growing. AKA this wine is awesome and it's only $15! Check it out! It's floral, fruity (think apples and peaches) with balanced minerality and acidity that will refresh the palate. On a side note be sure check out my spritzers blog here for some sparkling cocktail inspiration!
Domaine Bousquet Rosé
Last but not least, a rosé – because what summer wine list is complete without a rosé?
It's uncomplicated, refreshing, goes down easy, and is only $9!! Out of this wine you'll get lots of red fruit (think plums and sour cherry) with a slight tartness that pairs really well with lighter food and, believe it or not, Asian dishes (I'm quite fond of this wine with fried rice).
There you have it – my top picks for affordable wines that will go with your summer festivities, whether you're by the pool, entertaining on the patio or grilling up some grub.
Cheers to summer!
All sizes and vintages are in stock at the time of publication. In the event advertised vintages sell out, substitute vintages may be offered at the same price. Products and prices are subject to change.