With the economy still figuring itself out, everyone is looking for values. I have quite a few, although I was sharing some with people in my apartment building and someone said they thought even $20 was too high. Always good to get these reality checks. The good news: one of my favorites wines this month is about $15!
- Pagos del Galir Godello is full of lemon, tart green apple and lots of minerality which made it great with our cauliflower pasta. It’s about $20 (or less).
- Verdicchio: learn it and then love it. It’s just a great grape to have in your summer repertoire ‑ crisp, clean, and great as an aperitif or with light white fish. This Umani Ronchi CaSal di Serra Verdicchio 2018 has beautiful lemon, white blossom, fleshy yellow apple, and raw almond notes and is only $15-17 at a few stores (though $20 on wine.com) but you can usually find them for under $20 pretty easily.
- Yamhill Valley Pinot Gris OK this one’s $22 but it’s a great value for what it delivers: really good depth of cinnamon, baked apple, and pear but still elegant. Love Willamette Pinot Gris.
For value reds, I had two this month that packed a ton of punch for their price.
- Massolino Langhe Nebbiolo 2017: Ridiculous that this is only $27. Slightly grittier than Barolo (which is also made from Nebbiolo) but still refined. Some black cherries and blueberries mixed with earth and a hint of mushrooms.
- Nozzole Chianti Classico Riserva 2016 You always need a tomato sauce wine, and whether you’re having pasta or pizza the acid in this one is a great match. $29.99
And now for a few splurges, because we have to keep celebrating life:
- I’ve oddly been drinking a lot of Chardonnay, but frankly it’s because I’ve been encouraged by a lot of good ones. The beautifully restrained 2018 Planeta from Sicily has more acid and stone fruit than your typical Chardonnay. $43
- Gran Moraine Chardonnay 2017: From the awesome Yamhill Carlton AVA in Oregon, this has a spritz of ripe lemon, some yellow apple, and orange blossom as it opens up with a touch of sour cream on the finish. Plus, amazingly long, water-gushing acidity and not overly heavy. Can you tell I liked it? $45
- Neyen Espiritu de Apalta 2015: I’ve said it before, but I really love the green pepper spice of Carmenere and this one gets more muscle with the 45% Cab added to it. $65
- Greppone Mazzi Brunello di Montalcino 2011: Silky black cherries, spicy plum, cocoa powder, and light earth. Bought this in Montalcino itself so popped it open on my birthday — it was delicious but could’ve used even a few more years! $58
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