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Best Wine You Can Buy

2022 is coming to a close, and while the New Year is a great chance to reset, this is also a great time to reflect on the past 365 days. Here at VinePair, many of those evenings were spent sipping and swirling delicious wines.

best wine you can buy

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A Pinot Grigio for Riesling lovers and a prime example of the innovation American wine has to offer, this Michigan-grown white is bursting with notes of beeswax and tropical fruit. Aromas of kiwi and peaches evolve into notes of sweet, overripe orchard fruit on the palate. Rating: 90

A sip of Grecian history, Mylonas Rosé offers a unique blend of two native grapes: Malagousia and Mandilaria. The resulting wine boasts slightly earthy flavors, with accents of honeysuckle and Camembert rind. This bottle especially shines alongside food, from green salads to cheese plates. Rating: 92

Never heard of Teroldego? This approachable, fruit-forward red from northern Italy is your perfect entry point into the variety. Warming notes of cherry cola combine with savory buttered popcorn for a wine that pairs beautifully with rich pastas. Rating: 93

This $28 Rioja can be enjoyed by nerds and newbies alike, offering the slightly sweet cherry notes we expect from the category, complemented by candied flower petals, mint leaves, and balsamic reduction. This is a widely available wine and more affordable than some of the other iconic releases from the producer. Keep a case on hand as your house pour, or snag it as a last-minute host gift. Rating: 92

2021 has been a year full of surprises. As the world begins to open back up, so too have our favorite restaurants, bars, and lounges. And after the hand 2020 dealt us, this year has felt like something of a breath of fresh air in the wine world and beyond.

On the nose, this funky French wine smells like lemon curd flecked with lemon zest. It has a sour note reminiscent of cider on the nose and palate. The palate also brings out flavors of oyster brine with balanced floral notes. Rating: 90

This English sparkling wine smells like crisp, fruity green apples, with notes of sweet bruised fennel on the finish. It is an angled wine on the palate and would be great paired with oysters. Rating: 90

Bright and rich, this wine opens with a pop of cherry, earthy cinnamon, a hint of raspberry, and a dash of pepper. The palate is also bright, with great natural acidity keeping the core of fruit present but balanced. It is a wonderful, breezy Northern California Pinot. Rating: 90

Along with aromas of licorice and a hint of watermelons and cherries, this wine smells like an earthy forest floor. The fruit is mild with very active acidity. It has nice depth while still being refreshing. Rating: 91

With aromas of crushed, overripe strawberries, this sparkling wine is very refreshing and at the same time heady and deep. The palate is rich with dense fruit juiciness that is blown apart by amazing acidity. Its effervescence makes it a great wine to start the night off with. Rating: 92

Cannonau, made from the Grenache grape, is often enjoyed with spit-roasted suckling pig and seafood pasta on the island of Sardinia. Fruit and earth on the palate, with bright acidity announcing the smell of plums and dark cherries, this wine is a top example of the style. Pair it with anything from pork chops to paella. Rating: 91

This wine smells like crisp, freshly sliced pears and white flower petals. The palate has great balance, with active natural acidity winding throughout. This California Pinot Gris is perfect for a late afternoon with good friends and some nibbles. Rating: 91

Nice, ripe, and savory, this Texas Mourvedre smells like sour cherries with a dash of cinnamon. The fruit concentrates on the palate, but good natural acidity breaks it apart, making for a nicely balanced wine. Rating: 91

A classic American Cab, this wine has an excellent depth of fruit with moderate natural acidity. It smells like blackberries with a whiff of cedar and a dollop of earth. The power and balance of this wine will allow it to age for the next decade, but it is drinking well now. Rating: 95

Soft, juicy, and filled with aromas of blackberries, blueberries, and turned soil, this wine has a supple palate like a good Merlot. It is very well balanced and, at just $20, would be a great weeknight dinner companion. Rating: 92

Big, juicy, and round, this Cab Franc is full of berry flavor. But that berry is balanced by a significant note of white pepper that balances this unique wine (is it a rosé or a chillable red?). Either way, it will keep you sipping. Rating: 93

This is a good, easy-drinking Spanish Verdejo. It smells like pears and serrano peppers with excellent and active acidity. This is solid go-to wine for any occasion and would especially shine with a sushi dinner. Rating: 90

This California rosé has just the right amount of juicy fruit to give it a little weight and personality, with enough natural acidity to keep that fruit fun and refreshing. At $20, this is a case-buy, go-to, give-me-now kind of wine. Rating: 93

On the nose, this wine smells of honey and brioche with a whiff of elderflower. The palate has a refreshing depth that is balanced by fantastic acidity. It would be a great pairing for a goat cheese salad. Rating: 91

This Italian Nebbiolo is delicious in its simplicity. It has good, even weight on the palate, with a welcome waft of fresh soil and ripe cherries. The natural acidity holds this wine in place, allowing the palate to experience all of its textures. Rating: 92

Deep and savory with a full mouthfeel, this wine smells like rendered bacon fat and dried cooking herbs with blackberries and cracked black pepper. There is a slight note of spiced meat on the palate and a calm, smoky finish. Rating: 94

This is a big, bold, and balanced California Pinot. The alcohol is high for this grape, creating a sharpness on the nose that smells like cherries, cola, and a hint of soil. That sharpness weaves into the body of the wine, aiding the natural acidity and keeping the wine refreshing. The palate has a natural viscosity, keeping you thinking about the next sip. This is a Pinot to pair with fish or poultry, and would especially shine alongside duck. Rating: 93

A whisper of oranges weaves through rustic cherry vibes. The aromas are in control. They tell you what to enjoy, layer by layer, as the wine blossoms in the glass. This Italian wine is elegant yet powerful, not letting the intense characteristics overwhelm the palate. So much balance. So much satisfaction. Rating: 95

Sauvignon Blanc is a light-bodied wine that will usually have aromas of grapefruit, asparagus, and some herbaceous elements. It pairs well with a lot of light foods such as green vegetables and chicken, pork, or fish with herbs.

Pinot Gris, also known as Pinot Grigio, is a light to medium-bodied white wine. Pinot Gris typically has aromas of peach, citrus, honeysuckle, and apple. It tastes delicious with lighter foods such as fish, shellfish, and fresh vegetables.

Cabernet Sauvignon is a bold wine, usually being medium to full-bodied. It has notes of plum, blackberry, black pepper, and leather. Cabernet Sauvignon is best paired with steak, braised short ribs, or even hamburgers.

One of the main reasons is simply the tremendously slim margin Costco takes thanks to their membership model. Basically they make their money on membership fees allowing them to keep product prices, including those on wine (and beer), very low. Their selection isn't the broadest but they do tend to bring in some very nice wines from all over the world (places like California, Washington, France, Italy, Australia, Argentina, Spain and Portugal to name a few), especially in the under $20 price point.

While most of the Costco wines are available elsewhere (albeit at slightly higher prices) keep your eyes out for deals on lesser-known labels as well. Inventory of wines will vary by market and even by store within a market so at times you can find some low production wines available in an individual store. (And if you see them, grab them -- turnover is very high so what's there today could very well be gone tomorrow.) Also, in some states you don't even need a membership to shop the store.

Don't Miss Out!About Reverse Wine SnobWine doesn't have to be expensive to be good! Jon Thorsen is an independent wine consumer who has been helping millions of people find great wines without breaking the bank since 2011. If you're new to Reverse Wine Snob sign up for my free guide and don't miss our exclusive Insider Deals! Read more about Reverse Wine Snob in the news and about me.

Sorry snobs, it's just a fact: there are lots of decent, highly-drinkable wines to be found at the grocery stores. In fact, we reported on 13 great bottles you can find at almost any grocery store (those that are legally allowed to serve wine, anyway) just the other week.

"This wine is from Bodega Catena Zapata, [one of the oldest winemakers in Argentina]. It's less than $9 for a bottle at Walmart. You're going to want to stock up on that. Everyone should be happy with this bottle for everything you're putting on the grill this summer: for your burgers and your ribs and steaks. It's the perfect big red."

"Wines from Joel Gott are old reliables that I love. The family owns Taylor's Automatic Refresher (now called Gott's Roadside), an iconic little drive-through burger place in Napa Valley. They make a decent size production of simple, fit-for-all, but delicious Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc, and Merlot. They have a 2014 Cabernet from Joel Gott that I'd recommend as a great reasonably priced wine to have with dinner."

"Chateau Ste Michelle is another company that has great distribution for the quality of the wine. You can find some relative values for Cabernet in Washington State over Napa or Sonoma. Walmart has a 2014 from them and that's $13.20, which is a great deal. Chateau Ste. Michelle has had wines on the cover of Wine Spectator!" 041b061a72


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