The following scored highest in their price ranges in wines tasted the past three months. Some were tasted with food, others in comparative tastings. The wines were purchased from Costco, local grocery stores and wine merchants and larger online wine merchants (Total Wine; We are having better luck with the reasonably priced Argentinian wines of late. For finding your best sources and ranges of prices, check Wine Searcher.

In order of price. Enjoy!

Louis Martini 2018

  • $17 (on sale, local grocery store) California 2018 Louis M. Martini Cabernet Sauvignon Sonoma County. Mid-garnet, brick edges, viscous (13.5 alc.); berry, mint, cassis, red fruit nose; mid acids/tannins; balanced; nice semi-long red fruit, light wood finish. 16 UC Davis scale, 90 other scales.
  • $17 (on sale, local grocery store) California 2021 Banshee Pinot Noir Sonoma County. Light ruby, viscous (13.8 alc.); stemmy, red fruit, wood, cherry nose; mid acids/tannins; semi-tight red fruit finish; might round out a little more with time. 15.5/89.
  • $15 California 2021 Martin Ray Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast. Mid ruby, viscous (14.1 alc.); stemmy, red fruit nose, fades fast; mid+ acids, mid tannins; semi-long red fruit finish; slightly hot. w/appetizers, cheeses. 15/88.
  • Dry Creek Valley, Calif. 2020 Windemere Cabernet Sauvignon ($15 on sale at Costco). Mid-garnet, viscous (14.5 alc.); herbaceous, berry, cassis, red fruit nose; mid acids; mid+ tannins and depth; long grapey red fruit finish. w/beef stew. 15.5/89.
  • $17 Aussie red Rhone wine blend, 2020 Torbreck (Cuvée) Juveniles, Barossa. (44% Grenache, 36% Mataro, 8% Counoise, 6% each Carignan and Shiraz). Mid garnet, viscous (14.5 alc.); red fruit, peppery, old wood, prunes, pomegranate nose; mid acids; mid+ tannins; long semi-chewy hot finish. BBQ, burger, pizza wine. 15-15.5/88-89.
  • Well-made $18 Argentina beef wine 2018 Mascota Vineyards Malbec Unánime. Dark garnet, viscous (14.0 alc.); ripe grape, peppery, prune, black fruit and wood nose (15 months in new French oak); mid+ acids; mid-full tannins; deep fruit; long semi-chewy finish. 16-16.5/9-91.
  • $18 Valle de Uco, Argentina, red 2019 Finca Flichman Paisaje de Tupungato (50% each Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec); mid garnet, viscous (14.0 alc.); ripe grape, red fruit, herbaceous, mint nose; low acids; medium tannins; balanced semi-long red fruit finish. w/stew. 15.5/89.
  • Medoc, Bordeaux blend 2019 Château Pierre de Montignac, $19. Dark garnet, viscous (13.5 alc.); herbaceous, cocoa, mint, wood nose; low-medium acids; medium+ tannins; long berry and wood finish. w/beef. 15.5/89.
  • Calif. 2019 Raymond Vineyard & Cellar R Collection Field Blend ($20 Costco). Mid-dark garnet, viscous (14.5); herbaceous, berry, smokey nose; mid-body; balanced; low-mid acids, mid tannins; decent depth; semi-long fruity finish. w/flat breads. 16/90.
  • $20 Tuscany 2019 Redi Rosso di Montepulciano. Mid ruby, brick edges, viscous (13.5 alc.); red fruit, bay leaves, light oak nose; low-mid acids; mid+ tannins softens with air; good fruit; easy drinking Italian red. w/meat loaf. 16/90.
  • Salta, Argentina, 2018 Pasarisa Malbec ($24). Dark purple, viscous (14.0 alc.); ripe grape, fig, big fruit, new world nose; mid+acids; medium-full tannins; tight; long hot berry, cherry and wood finish. BBQ wine. 15.5/89.

    Torbreck Cuvee