With an expanding pipeline of wines flowing into the West from all over the world, there’s no need to settle for cheap plonk if you are on a budget.  Values abound in quality wines, including those from major wineries with proven reputations.  Here is a short list of good values in red wines Tweeted about during January worth trying for a variety of occasions.

Cabernet Sauvignon

Value pasta/beef/stew wine Ch. Ste Michelle Columbia Valley Wash 06 Cabernet $10. Berry nose, mid-body, soft tannins, fruity.

Value Cabernet 06 Shiloh Road Napa $12. Berries/chocolate/Cab nose; mid body; round, ripe, fruity. w/lighter meat dishes/sauces.

Macho BBQ wine John Alan 06 Belle Terre Rouge $12 14.5 alc 80% Cab 10%@ Petite Syrah/Malbec. Herbaceous/mint/prune nose; big fruit/finish.


Stylish Malbec 08 HJ Fabre, Mendoza $12. Complex fruit/oak nose; balanced, mid-tannins, good structure; tasty finish. Beef wine.

Quaffing appetizer wine 08 Tapiz Mendoza Malbec $11. Light Malbec nose; mid-body to soft, low tannins. W/Manchego cheese, sourdough.


Pinot Noir

Bigger style Pinot Noir 08 Vina Tarapaca $13 Chile. Light PN nose, cherries, wood; mid-big body; fruity finish. Beef bourguignon, stew wine.

Value Pinot Noir 07 Baileyana Edna Valley $13. PN/wood nose; nice balance, clean PN flavor, fruit. W/ham-based soups, cassoulet, etc.


Big Barossa BBQ/rib wine 07 Schild Estate Shiraz $15. Dark purple; ripe grape nose, spice; good structure, flavor, finish.

Cold/rainy weather pasta pizza wine: D’Arenberg 08 Shiraz Stump Jump $8 McLaren Vale, Aus. Berry/mint nose, mid-big fruit, but style.


Other Reds

Pizza/pasta value wine Mas Donis 04 Montsant Spain $9. Garnacha/Syrah blend. Rhone-like nose. Ripe, good fruit w/some tannins/14% alc.