Some Great Wines on a Budget or Go All Out!

Back to Blog

Some Great Wines on a Budget or Go All Out!

This weekend like many Americans I worked on my tax return, fun huh!  I needed a glass of wine with my hamburger helper but wasn’t feeling up to raiding the cellar so I reached for what I call a Tuesday night wine. A simple, fresh wine correct and refreshing, and I felt better (maybe it was the second glass). We all need wine for different occasions and the wine world is happy to deliver; there is quality wine out there at $10 and $100 and like filet you don’t always want the $100 bottle.  So here is an insiders list on some wines to brighten up your day.

Some of the best for $10 or less

Herncia Altes Garnatxa Tinto  Terra Alta, Spain
You haven’t heard of this wine, it just hit Colorado but oh my is it good; pure flavors of low yielding old vine Grenache grown on poor soils at high altitude.  Drink with anything!

Oxford Landing Shiraz  Southeast Australia
Bashing Australia has been good sport lately but when you want a big glass of wine for a price no one does it better for less; from the first family of wine in Australia (Hillsmiths), spicy and ripe but not overripe.

Tilia Cabernet Sauvignon  Mendoza, Argentina
Here’s a secret, the best red grape in Argentina may be Cabernet and this one way over delivers.

Stella Montepulciano d’Abruzzo  Abruzzo, Italy
Spaghetti Red is not just for film, this is what you want when red sauce meets pasta.

Riff Pinot Grigio  Dolomitti, Italy
Inspired by the Dolomites (actually an ancient reef-riff in german)this is crisp lively Pinot Grigio, great for light foods or sunsets.

Casal Garcia Vinho Verde  Minho, Portugal
Slightly petulant, fresh, light and utterly refreshing; you better get two because you can’t drink just one

Around $15

Firestone Estate Chardonnay  Santa Barbara, California
I was served this blind and swore it was a “Gucci” Chardonnay-so complex and balanced

Capcanes Mas Donis  Monsant, Spain
Old vine Grenache and Syrah grown on rocks at over 2500 feet, complex, long, begs for grilled meat

Yealands Sauvignon Blanc  Marlborough, New Zealand
Fragrant Thyme, grapefruit, lively acidity and minerality, the first Carbon Neutral Winery in the World.

Parker Station Pinot Noir  California
You remember Sideways the movie, this is a wine from that area, some of the scenes were filmed there, real Pinot at a price that you can drink (ignore the raccoon on the label he doesn’t bite)

Punto Final Malbec
Malbec is the “it” grape because it delivers rich flavor and is slightly softer (lower tanning) than Cabernet; this is pretty sexy stuff


About $25 – When you need to show off but are still on a budget

Charles Smith Chateau Smith  Columbia Valley, Washington
Charles Smith isn’t subtle but he does get it right, an homage to Bordeaux Washington style.

Vietti Barbera d’Asti Tre Vigne  Piedmont, Italy
Luca Coraldo is one of the nicest most inspiring people in all of wine, Barbera that will make you forget Barolo and Barberesco.

Allegrini Pallazo della Torre  Veneto, Italy
Another “ first family” wine, a baby Amarone, 2/3 the flavor and 1/5 the price (top 100 in 2011 )

Saintsbury Chardonnay  Carneros, California
Pure flavors, rich without being ponderous, a standard bearer for the California Chardonnay


Notables-sometimes you want to go crazy

Paradigm Cabernet Sauvignon  Napa, California $65
Made by Heidi Peterson-Barret from grapes grown in the same soil as Araju, Staglin, and other notables all the flavor none of the hype

Talley Chardonnay  Arroyo Secco, California $35
First Cabin Chardonnay, hillside, indigenous yeast, new French oak, hazelnut and pear and brilliantly smooth


Ken Theobald
Classic Wines
General Manager
6489 E. 39th Street
Denver, CO 80207
(303) 825-1360, Ext 230

Share this post

Leave a Reply

Back to Blog