Five Dependable Whites You Can Find (Most) Anywhere


As a wine consumer I love to read about others experiences with wine, but one of the most frustrating things is when you read about a great wine that you simply cannot find. With over 100,000 different wines made every year and at best only a few thousand of those making it on to your local stores' shelves, searching down a specific wine can be exasperating. So today I've culled through some of my very favorite picks under $15 to come up with five of our favorite whites that should be available to just about everyone. 

Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc + Viognier

This blend of 80% Chenin Blanc and 20% Viognier is a staple at retailers like Trader Joe's and Costco. Pine Ridge, which is known for their pricey Napa Valley Cabernet sure knows how to make a cheap white wine. Pleasant aromas of grapefruit, melon, honeysuckle and pear lead into a palate bursting with juicy succulent fruit, a fabulous lively acidity and even a nice mineral streak. Not only is this a fantastic summertime sipper but it's also a great pairing for spicy Asian food. Available for as low as $10.
The name Fumé Blanc was created by Robert Mondavi in the late 1960s in an effort to differentiate his new style of dry Sauvignon Blanc from the sweet version that was popular at the time. This bottle also adds in 6% Semillon and features pleasant aromas of lime, tropical fruit, melon and some light fennel spice notes. The wine tastes excellent with lots of lemongrass, more tropical fruit (guava and pineapple primarily), orange zest and lime wrapped up in a very smooth texture. The wine also showcases a wonderful racy acidity. It ends with lingering citrus and guava notes and even has a bit of earthy minerality on the long finish. Whatever you call it, it's plenty good! 
This 100% Chenin Blanc from the Western Cape of South Africa can be had for as little as $7. It presents with pleasant and even complex aromas of lime, melon, guava and other tropical fruit plus a little granny smith apple. Tasting this medium-bodied wine reveals a thick and luscious mouthfeel with crisp and clean flavors of zesty citrus and melon, nice minerality and even a bit of spice. The crisp and clean theme continues on the lingering finish. This is a fantastic wine and a steal at only $7. Stock up!
75% of this wine was fermented in a combination of new and used French and American oak and underwent malolactic fermentation. The other 25% was fermented in stainless steel and did not undergo malolactic fermentation. The result is a wine with lots of fruit and a steely minerality that quickly gives way to toasty, oaky, spicy notes that turn a bit buttery on the finish. This is a rich, medium to full-bodied wine that offers a great mix of the unoaked and buttery styles in one wine. It ends with very long lasting butter, tobacco and vanilla notes. This is a great price for a wine of this quality especially when you figure in the cost of those barrels used for 75% of the wine!
This fabulously flavorful and fizzy blend of 89% Riesling and 11% Muscat Gordo from Victoria, Australia can be had widely for $10 or less. It begins with aromas of guava, citrus, pear, and floral notes. Tasting the wine shows mango, pear and peach flavors that combine into just a really nice level of sweetness. The sweet fruit continues on the medium long finish. The high acidity, good sweetness and light bubbles will make this a great match for lots of different foods including spicy Asian dishes. Wines in a similar style that also got strong consideration for this spot were the Moscato Allegro and the Innocent Bystander Pink Moscato.

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