Cheap Summer Wines That Taste Expensive

Cheap Summer Wines That Taste Expensive

So it's Tuesday, but that doesn't mean its too early in the week for some vino. Especially with a bottle that costs less than $15 wine can be an inexpensive compliment to dinner (or sometimes a main ingredient). Without further ado, here are some affordable, well-rated (and Yummly taste-tested) wines and recipes to pair them with.

Vigilance, Sauvignon Blanc. Lake County vintage 2010 - rated 91 points by Wilfred Wong.

Tasting notes: This wine has a clean, light color. Fermented in stainless steel to enhance its fruity notes, this wine has a depth and richness of melon and citrus flavor with a zesty finish.

Where to get it: $14.99, BevMo; or try Drylands Sauvignon Blanc 2007, which has a 90-point rating from Wine Enthusiast magazine. Starting at $11.99 from

Recipe inspirations: Pair with fresh seafood dishes and salad greens.

[Green Beans and Iceburg Lettuce Salad with Prawns (from Salad Pride)

Green Beans and Iceburg Lettuce Salad with Prawns

Challis Lane, Old Vine Zinfandel. California 2008 - rated 88 points by Wilfred Wong.

Tasting Notes: This wine  is dark and full-bodied, with aromas of ripe stone fruit and berries. Toasted oak flavors carry through to the palate for a long, lingering finish.

Where to get it: $8.99, BevMo. Another good wine and a 90 point "Best Buy" according to Wine Enthusiast magazine, is the SideJob Cellars Sonoma County Zinfandel. $15 from

Recipe Inspirations: Pair it with barbecue, from a grilled chicken skewer to a juicy burger.

[BBQ Chicken Burger (from Pass the Sushi)

BBQ Chicken Burger

McManis Family Vineyard, Petite Sirah. California vintage 2009 - winner of the Gold Medal, Best of Class 2011 San Francisco Chronicle

Tasting Notes: With a deep purple color, this wine is full of boysenberry and blueberry aroma. There are mocha notes in this Petite Sirah's flavor from four months of oak barrel aging. This wine is rich, big and juicy.

Where to get it: $8.99, BevMo; $8.98,; or find McManis wine at your local retailer

Recipe Inspirations: Try a big, bold dish to compliment this wine. Pair with a pot roast, rack of lamb or even a bold pasta dish.

[Grilled Lamb Chop, Greek Style (from Global Table Adventure)

Grilled Lamb Chop, Greek Style

Columbia Crest Grand Estates, Riesling. Columbia Valley 2008 - rated 89 points "Best Buy" by Wine & Spirits magazine

Tasting Notes: Smell delicate aromas of white fruits and orchard blossoms in this wine. A crisp acidic taste and vibrant fruity notes of apple, peach and orange zest are complimented by a hint of minerality.

Where to get it: $6.95,; starting at $7.99 from

Recipe Inspirations: Pair with a white-sauce vegetable or seafood pasta dish, citrus salad or salad greens.

[Pesto and Arugula Pasta (from a chow life)

Pesto and Arugula Pasta

Elena, Chardonnay. Sonoma County 2010 - rated 90 points by Wilfred Wong Tasting Notes: A light straw color, and taste of ripe fruit with a hint of minerality. This wine has a sturdy body and crisp finish.

Where to get it: $14.99, BevMo; or, with 90-points from Wine Enthusiast magazine, the Gordon Brothers 2006 Chardonnay is another great buy starting at $15.99 from

Recipe Inspirations: Try a juicy, roasted chicken dish or even your favorite veggie pizza.

[Vegetarian Pizza (from Veggie num num)

Vegetarian Pizza

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What is your favorite bargain wine? Tell us in the comments!