Wine Under $20

Seeking the best value for the buck.

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We Try Super-Portable STACKED Wines

The set of four 187-mL pre-poured cups are sealed and stacked on top of one another. They're handy the way juice boxes are, since you don't have to deal with bottles, corkscrews, or glasses. This means you can take them on picnics, camping trips, or wherever your heart desires. More

Seema's Favorite Budget Wines of 2012

As the holiday season approaches its peak, I've put together a line-up (or a wine-up!) of my favorite affordable sips of the year. Red and white, still and sparkling, Old World and New. Take this list with you if you're stocking up for familiy visits and parties to come in the next few weeks. More

Our Search for the Best Chianti Under $20

I have to admit that the range of home cooking in my apartment is pretty limited, particularly on weeknights when the ingredients of time and proper planning tend to be lacking. My boyfriend's go-to dish is "Chicken a la Frank's"—basically a chicken breast dropped into a pan with some Frank's hot sauce. When backup is inevitably required, I usually opt for simple, tomato-based pasta dishes. And what better to bring to a table of simple Italian cooking than rustic Italian wine? Fortunately for us, enjoying Sangiovese doesn't have to mean blowing the budget. More

Wine List Tips: The Best Wine at Red Lobster

Laced with plenty of butter and cheddar cheese, the biscuits at Red Lobster are pretty freakin' tasty. The rest of the food? Well, you can probably do better, depending where you are, but sometimes, you find yourself at a Red Lobster, and you're thirsty. We're here to help. Keep this list handy if you want to pick out a wine you won't regret. More

Our Search for the Best Gewurztraminer Under $20

Usually I reach for a dry Riesling or a partially-oaked Chardonnay, but if my notorious sweet tooth kicks in or I'm opting out of dessert for the night, Gewürztraminer hits the spot. Often on the floral side and somewhat effervescent, this wine can be a refreshing alternative to your go-to white, especially when you're looking for something that will go well with food. More

Our Search for the Best Viognier Under $20

Viognier is one of my favorite affordable-wine options because it makes some pretty interesting wines that can please a lot of different people. For manly men who prematurely decide white wine is too feminine for them, Viognier offers a rich, medium to full bodied white that can stand up to hearty food. For people who like their wine on the sweeter side, there are some options that are round, floral, and a little sweet. More

Wine List Tips: The Best Wine at The Olive Garden

Today we begin our foray into exploring the wine lists at popular chain restaurants. If you find yourself at The Olive Garden, there's no sommelier, and no cutesy descriptions, but you will see many of the same wines at every branch (though there may be a little variation from location to location). We tasted our way through 23 wines that you'll find at The Olive Garden in order to point you toward the best deals. More

We Try Every White Wine from Barefoot

My mom came into town this weekend. And she came to our Serious Eats wine tasting. I figured a lineup of Barefoot whites would actually be very appropriate for my mom, as most of what I've heard is that they tend to be light, fruity, and sweet (and inexpensive, at about $7 a bottle). Most of them fit the bill, but a couple stood out as much more palatable compared to the rest of the lot. More

Our Search for the Best Malbec Under $20

They say all good things come in threes—The Three Musketeers, Three Blind Mice, Three-Minute Egg. I would give you a fourth example, but that just seems like poor judgment. Instead, I'll tell you about three brave grapes, that many years ago made the long and trying journey from a faraway land called "France" to an also faraway land called "South America". The names of these grapes are Carmenere, Tannat, and Malbec. For this post, we tried a whopping 22 bottles of Malbec to pick out our favorites to recommend. More

Our Search for the Best Zinfandel Under $20

My love story with Zinfandel started at a small winery in Healdsburg, California called A. Rafanelli. Their Zins are ripe, slightly spicy, and just plain delicious. The only problem was that I lived in New York, and so I've had to put a lot of effort into this long distance relationship. My first trip there, I took back 2 bottles, the next 4, and before I knew it, I was sacrificing extra underwear in my suitcase to make space for all the wine. (Totally kidding...underwear is one of the best shock absorbers to prevent breakage during transit.) More

Serious Eats Amateur Wine Taste Along: New World Merlot Under $20

I remember drinking Merlot after I saw the movie Sideways, and I thought, "What's the big deal? Why was he so angry about Merlot? Despite my own affinities for the glass in hand, it was sad to realize such a blanket statement about a grape would stick around for a while. Fortunately for us amateurs, we get to make up our own minds about this grape variety. Here are a few tips on where it's made, how to serve it, and some tasty (and affordable) bottles to try out. More

We Tried Every Red Wine from Yellow Tail

In college, we used to have formals with all the exchange students from England who had come for the year. It was called a "formal" and half the people had British accents and we were all drinking wine, so it was clearly one of the more posh events on the social calendar. Needless to say there was a lot of wine consumed, and funding such efforts on a college budget usually meant one thing: Two Buck Chuck. I wish that back then we had splurged the extra few dollars and traded up to Yellow Tail. This week, we tasted all of Yellow Tail's red wine offerings and the rosé, a total of 11 bottles. Read on for the results. More

Yellow Tail Bubbles Sparkling Wines

The bubblies are roughly aligned with the prices of the Yellow Tail varietal bottles, coming in at around $8 to 10, depending on where you buy. And each comes with a novel, resealable closure called a "Zork". Basically, you peel off a spiral of plastic (like some milk gallons have) and shimmy off the remaining closure. Less exciting without the pop one normally looks for in a sparkler, but it should keep the bubbles in the bottle for longer. But is the stuff beyond the Zork any good? More

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