10 Wines that Won’t Break the Bank

These globe-spanning, recently-rated reds and whites offer a lot of bang for the buck, all for $20 and under.

TGIF, right? Get your weekend started on the right foot with these delicious, budget-friendly selections. Recently-rated by our editors, these selections span a wide range of styles. Whether you’re craving an aromatic Austrian Grüner or an exotic Israeli Sangiovese, these red and white wines under $20 offers something for everyone.

White Wines

Leth 2014 Felser Weinberge Riesling (Wagram); $19, 92 points. Slender and pure, lemony and tight, yet fruitful and cushioned. While riper years often bring heft to Rieslings from Wagram, the rich loess soils here have rounded out a slender year. Notions of cologne via citrus foliage and heady conifer show themselves with time in glass. A slender but perfectly balanced beauty. Domaine Select Wine Estates. —Anne Krebiehl

Nautilus 2014 Sauvignon Blanc (Marlborough); $19, 91 points. This is a tight, crisp rendering of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. Struck flint aromas add nuance, while the bright lemon-lime flavors whirl together into a citrus sorbet of refreshment. Negociants USA, Inc. Editors’ Choice. —Joe Czerwinski

Sepp Moser 2014 Von den Terrassen Grüner Veltliner (Kremstal); $20, 90 points. Rounded, earthy notes of ripe fruit are foremost in the aromatic stakes. On the palate they are joined by a yeastily textured savoriness and fresh citrus verve. This goes well beyond mere fruit and shows off the more earthy side of Grüner. Satisfyingly zesty finish. Williams Corner Wine. —A.K.

Château la Verrière 2014 Bordeaux Blanc; $15, 90 points. This is a tangy wine, packed with fruit, orange and lemon zest and a background hint of herbaceousness. A tight, steely texture gives both acidity and the promise of aging. Drink from early 2016. Wine Warehouse Imports. Best Buy. —Roger Voss

Mar de Viñas 2014 Albariño (Rías Baixas); $17, 90 points. Fresh apple and nectarine aromas are clean and appealing. This is round, lifted and correct in terms of mouthfeel. Fleshy nectarine and apple flavors finish minerally, a touch briny and long. Drink now. Grapes of Spain. —Michael Schachner

Red Wines

Golan Heights Winery 2012 Gilgal Sangiovese (Galilee); $15, 90 points. Deep garnet to the eye, this wine offers fragrances of black cherry, cranberry and espresso. A net of soft tannins plays host to flavors of strawberry, cherry, white chocolate and Thai basil. The finish is a balancing act between smooth and bright sensations on the palate. Kosher. Yarden Wines, Inc. Best Buy. —Mike DeSimone

Wargin Wines 2011 Big & Beautiful (Solano County); $18, 90. This impressively concentrated, full-bodied and firmly tannic wine will be a great match for the next juicy steak or lasagna. It has a thick, inky, red color, attractive cedar and spice aromas, and full flavors like blackberries and pomegranate juice. The thick, velvety tannic feel is perfect for adventurous tastes. It’s made with Montepulciano, Sangiovese and Freisa grapes. —Jim Gordon

Lucas Vineyards 2012 Limited Reserve Cabernet Franc (Finger Lakes); $20, 90 points. Penetrating tannins hold a tight grip over rich layers of blackberry and cherry liqueur in this bold, structured Cabernet Franc. Zesty cranberry acidity lifts the mid palate, exposing complex shades of chocolate, herb and granite. It’s a solid wine now, but should meld beautifully from 2017–2020. Cellar Selection. —Anna Lee Iijima

​Tenuta degli Dei 2013 Chianti Classico; $20, 89 points. Aromas of leafy underbrush, tilled soil, blue flowers and dark berry lead the nose. The vibrant, straightforward palate offers crushed wild cherry, black raspberry, anise and white pepper. It’s easy drinking and well balanced thanks to fresh acidity and sleek tannins. Massanois Imports. —Kerin O’Keefe

​The Leader 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon (Columbia Valley); $18, 89 points. Light aromas of dark chocolate, plum, herbs, flowers and tropical fruit provide intrigue. The dark fruit flavors are full in feel, showing depth and concentration along with a grip of tannins. —Sean Sullivan

Published on July 24, 2015
Topics: Ratings, Value Wines



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