Sometimes you just need a bottle that gets the job done with a minimum of fuss. Perhaps you’re bringing a hostess gift to your least-favourite cousin. Maybe you’re waiting on your next paycheque and have exactly $20 in the bank (and obviously you need coffee tomorrow, soooo…)
Whatever the reason, sometimes you want a wine that’s perfectly fine and also perfectly cheap. Here are my top five favourites:
La Vielle Ferme Rosé
This fresh, drinkable rosé is nicely balanced. Many cheap rosés are overly sweet or barely hide the taste of raw, yeasty alcohol (yum!) La Vielle Ferme neatly side-steps these common pitfalls and produces an excellent example of the genre for about $12 a bottle.
Wild Olive Old Vines Chenin Blanc
You can find this classic, youthful wine in the South Africa section or on the “staff picks” shelf at many a liquor store. No need to age this baby, it comes right out of the bottle peachy, fresh and with a surprisingly lovely minerality. Retails for about $13 a bottle.
Little Black Dress Pinot Noir
If you’re on the fence about red wines, meet your gateway drug. Early 20s Jill road into red wines on this pony. Pinot Noir, one of the lighter red grape cousins, shines in this warm, cherry and clove vintage. On the higher end of our price point, LBD Pinot Noir costs about $15 a bottle.
Cupcake Red Velvet
Possibly a controversial choice, but sweet red lovers will enjoy this blend of whatever this is. (Yeah, it’s that kind of wine.) The advertising lays claim to a lot of notes, but “hmm, not bad” is the only one you’ll really taste. It doesn’t take itself too seriously and it’s only $13 a bottle, sometimes $10 if Superstore Liquor is having a sale.
La Marca Prosecco
Celebrating? This is actually my favourite prosecco, and I’ve spent more and less in this category with no change. For the money, La Marca is where it’s at. It’s perfect – crisp with just a bit of sweetness on a honey note. Definitely worth busting out the dollar store flutes for this one. Pop the bubbly for $15 a bottle.