Best Cheap Red Wines Under $20
Shopping for red wine is no walk in the park. When you’re staring down a wall of hundredsnay, thousandsof nearly identical bottles, it’s almost impossible to know which ones are worth your time just by looking at them. You can usually guess that an expensive bottle will be at least kind of good, but not everyone has the means to drop a lot of dough every time they want a sip of cab sauv.
Thankfully, there are a number of amazing, affordable red winesyou just have to know what to look for. That’s why we picked the brains of sommeliers, mixologists, and wine experts from all over the country to get their top picks under $20. These 43 bottles are some of the best cheap red wines you can find. They won’t break the bank and are actually quite stunning, despite their low price tag.
Note: The prices below reflect the average online-purchasing price as of the time of publication. Prices may vary.
Jaboulet Parallele 45 Rouge
When shopping for a bottle of affordable red wine, you wont find many quality options until now. The Jaboulet Parallele 45 is a wine based on the Grenache-Syrah blend that is made all year round.
The major dominant flavors that go inside are cherry and blackberry. The wine has got a great balance of certain elements like citrusy, silky, and somewhat cherry-like.
Benito Santos Ras Baixas Albario Igrexario De Saiar 2018 $1297
A lot of insipid albariño is out there. Those wines tend to be slightly sweet, with flavors of tropical fruits. This one from Benito Santos, made with organic grapes, is not one of them. Its tense, alive and vibrant, floral and saline with a lively citrus tinge. When I drink this, I find myself craving oysters and clams on the half-shell.
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The Pinot Project California Pinot Noir
When it comes to $10 to $15 wines, the Pinot Project California Pinots are a great option. They have a cherry cola spice character that was inspired by the classic Russian River wines. However, cheap pinots like this one resemble a mythical creature that’s super rare—you can hardly find them anywhere!
In the first glimpse, the color of this wine is very red. The Pinot Project goes well with chicken and turkey, and it has a critic score of 88/100 on major wine sites.
Beni Di Batasiolo Barbera Dalba 2018
There are a host of great options for pasta night, and this Italian red from Piedmont ranks among the best of them. Earthy notes add a rustic edge to its fruity nose before the palate displays its concentrated core . With a light profile overall, theres no risk of this wine outshining or overshadowing your favorite dish. Average price: $17.
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Inexpensive Red Wines To Relish In 2022
Alcohol percentage: 13.5
With rich, luscious taste, this is an inexpensive price tag of this red wine from California. It is the best cheap red wine for your next party. The engrossing taste will enlighten the tastebuds of all your guests.
Its tasting notes include vanilla, mocha and cherry. The different blends of Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Merlot and Syrah give it an extravaganza taste. It is medium-bodied with enthralling flavors. The best food to try with this red wine is lamb, turkey, chinese dishes and cheese nuggets.
Alcohol percentage: 10
Enjoy the rich taste of red wine from California at the best price. The Rabble brand is famous for its unique vibrancy and luscious flavors. Undoubtedly, it is the best red wine for special events.
The tasting notes consist of red fruit, dark fruit, cherry, velvety and chocolate. The natural environment and the hard work of Rabble produces this delicious Cabernet Sauvignon. You can enjoy the wine with fried duck, turkey, roasted meat, tuna and prawns.
Alcohol percentage: 13.5
Relish the blend of Petite Sirah, Syrah, Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon in this wine from California. If you are a big fan of red wine, you cant let go of this brand available such a reasonable price.
Alcohol percentage: 13
Want to taste the organic red wine from Italy? Here is this magnificent red wine to calm your tastebuds. The intensity and the smoothness of the wine are very satiating.
Joel Gott Blend No 815 Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
This intriguing bottle contains a blend of one variety, Cabernet Sauvignon, grown across six distinct appellations. The skillfully composed blend has ripe blue- and black-fruit aromas mixed with vanilla oak and black pepper spice. The wines velvety mouthfeel gives way to a long, fruity finish. Price: $17
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Schiavenza Dolcetto Dalba 2018 $1399
Dolcetto is a terribly underrated grape, and Im not sure why. Good inexpensive bottles, like this one from Schiavenza in Serralunga dAlba, are fresh, fruity, rich and joyous. For a little more money, you can find deeper, more complex and expressive wines. But good dolcetto requires a producer to take it seriously rather than treat it as a cheap, throwaway wine. Many, sadly, reserve their thought and effort for the big-money nebbiolo wines.
Filipa Pato & William Wouters Bairrada Dinamica Baga 2018 $1297
With its distinctive terroirs, Portugal over the last few years has blossomed as a source of fresh, balanced, unusual wines made from indigenous grapes found almost nowhere else. The bright, lively, slightly chalky Dinamica is an entry-level bottle from Filipa Pato and William Wouters, a husband-and-wife team, who are among a new wave in Bairrada exploring the potential of the baga grape.
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Best For Sangria: Juan Gil Jumilla Silver Label 2016
Courtesy of Vivino
- ABV: 15%
- Tasting Notes: Blackberry, plum, black cherry, tobacco, oak
For years, Juan Gil was the standard-bearer of Jumillaa wine region little known to Americans until Gil entered their daily lexicon. But with fame and fortune, production has increased, and while this label was once a wine to cellar and enjoy over years, today, its built more for a refreshing sangria. Spanish monastrell grapes add deep, dark flavors that pair nicely with an accouterment of fruit.
Angels & Cowboys Proprietary Red
This Sonoma County red has a nice, clean color and is warm and fruity. I get apple and cherry flavors. Its on the tart side, which is probably why I like it! But the main draw for me with Angels & Cowboys Proprietary Red is that with this wine you benefit from a trend in the market that is keeping prices lower on red blends. My theory is that the bulk of wine drinkers/buyers go into their shopping experience with a predisposed notion of what they want. I feel safe with a Cabernet so thats all Im going to look at. When in reality, a blend gives the wine making artist more flexibility to make their best artwork. In short, this wine drinks more expensive than it actually costs.
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Santa Julia Malbec Bonarda Tintillo
You may be put off from the screw-top bottle but dont back out just yet. This bottle of wine is filled with flavor that is both ripe and crisp. In fact, some may even prefer to chill this wine a bit before enjoying. Chilled red wine isnt always on the menu. However, you should try it if given the chance.
Legado Del Moncayo Garnacha 2019/2020
Campo de Borja, Spain, $12
Campo de Borja is known for inexpensive, delicious garnacha, a prototype juicy, fun red wine, and this gorgeous, gulpable example shows why. Unencumbered by oak, it simply tastes of fruit think cherry, blackberry, boysenberry and plum. There must also be smiles inside, because its difficult to taste it without breaking into a wide one. The importer is now selling the 2020 vintage. The winery also produces a fine garnacha called Montaña from older vines that is aged in oak for several months. ABV: 14.5 percent.
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Antinori Villa Toscana 2015
Tuscan-based Antinori is one of Italys largest wine producers, but dont let the quantity of its output trick you into thinking theres any sacrifice on quality. This non-traditional Tuscan blend combines French varieties Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot with local staple Sangiovese. The result is a succulent and complex red blend that mixes dried fruit, earth, and mineral notes with juicy cherry and red-berry flavors. Price: $18
Best Paso Robles: Chronic Cellars Suite Petite 2018
Courtesy of Wine.com
- Region: California, Central Coast, Paso Robles
- ABV: 14.8%
- Tasting Notes: Oak, roasted coffee, salted caramel, black licorice, blackberry
You shouldnt always judge a wine by its label, but in the case of Chronic Cellars, youre getting exactly what it looks like: fun, vibrant, colorful, and against the grain. To bolster their subversive persona, this Paso Robles outfit has winemaker Kip Lorenzetti running the show who cut his teeth at the reputable Orcutt Cellars and Wild Horse Winery. Furthermore, Paso Robles deserves more time in the national spotlightfor too long, because of its proximity, its been a Los Angeles wine lovers secret gem. No longer!
Toasty oak on the nose gives way to roasted coffee beans, salted caramel, black licorice, and blackberry coulis with a dollop of blueberry sauce. Nothing but juicy, satiny fruit on a long oaky finish.
Best Overall: Grounded Wine Co Public Radio 2017
Courtesy of Vivino
- Region: California, Central Coast, Paso Robles
- ABV: 14.4%
- Tasting Notes: Black cherry, red berries, cinnamon, chocolate
Winemaker Josh Phelps was born into a Napa winemaking family and the way of the vine is in his blood. His Grounded Wine Co. is a platform for the superstar winemaker to branch out from his Napa roots to find his footing in Californias central coast and beyond.
Public Radio is a downright delicious example that showcases the caliber of Phelpss craftsmanship. Flashy red berry fruit, black cherry, raspberry coulis, and crushed violets give way to juicy strawberry, cherry, and cinnamon with pops of chocolate. Elongated tannins are silken and the finish lasts for days.
Best Ros: Domaine De Triennes Ros
Region: Provence, France | ABV: 12.5% | Tasting Notes: Strawberry, Cream, Citrus zest
Known for its sandy beaches, lavender laden fields and sun-drenched days, the French region of Provence is also renowned for its rosé wine production. Still, not all Provencal pinks are created equal. Finding a high-quality producer is always key when searching for affordable wine, and rosé is no exception.
Triennes is a joint venture between Aubert de Villaine and Jeremy Seysses, two of Burgundys most talented vignerons, or winemakers. This bottle is produced from organically-farmed fruit and is loaded with flavors of tart strawberries, cream and citrus zest. Serve chilled with French-inspired snacks for an escape to sunny, southern Provence.
Region: Columbia Valley, Washington, USA | ABV: 14.3% | Tasting Notes: Raspberries, Black cherry, Vanilla
Good to Know:If Im looking for a wine from a place like Washington, then Im going straight to blends, says Andrew Januik, winemaker at . He recommends trying wines produced from a variety of growing sites, citing larger AVAs and growing areas as key. These wines also often have less oak on them and can drink better than their more expensive counterparts, especially early on, he says.
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Best Pinot Grigio: Elena Walch Pinot Grigio
Courtesy of Total Wine
Region: Alto Adige, Italy | ABV: 12.5% | Tasting Notes: Pear, White pepper, Citrus
Pinot grigio often gets a bad reputation, as much of it is mass produced, thin, and lacking in flavorhowever, we can promise you that those stats immediately dissipate upon first sip of Elena Walchs bottling. Now spearheaded by her daughters, Karoline and Julia, Elena Walchs 60 hectares of Alto Adige-based vines are all sustainably farmed, with respect for the environment put first. The wine was entirely vinified in stainless steel tanks, though a short period of sur-lie aging adds a pleasant texture to the wines light-bodied mouthfeel. This bright and zesty Pinot Grigio shows flavors of salty pears, white pepper, citrus, and fresh cut herbs. Pair with a variety of fresh hors doeuvres or simply sip on its own and enjoy as a lovely aperitif wine.
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If youve seen it in a commercial, avoid it, this is capitalism taking advantage of you, explains Dunugan. However, there are European producers making beautiful, organic wines but saving a fortune on glass. You can also recycle the packaging.
Robert Hall Cabernet Sauvignon 2018
Paso Robles, Calif., $15
If Napa Valley cabernet is pricey for your budget, Paso Robles is all too eager to step in and meet your red wine needs. The Robert Hall cabernet is deep in color, plush in texture and rich with flavors of black currant and blackberries, spiced with cocoa and coffee. It achieves all this without tasting as though it had been made in a laboratory. ABV: 14.5 percent.
Distributed by Breakthru: Available in the District at A-1 Wines & Liquors, Benning Liquors, Capitol Fine Wine and Spirits, Chevy Chase Wine & Spirits, Classy Corks Wine & Spirits, Cleveland Park Wine and Spirits, Harrys Reserve Fine Wine & Spirits, Haydens Liquor, McReynolds Liquors, Morris Miller Wine & Liquor, Rodmans. Widely available in Maryland. Available in Virginia at Ashburn Wine Shop in Ashburn Harris Teeter Kroger in Charlottesville Total Wine & More Westover Market in Arlington.
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Loimer Kamptal Lois Grner Veltliner 2018 $1397
Loimer is one of my favorite producers in the Kamptal region in Austria. Fred Loimer is a leader in biodynamics, and even his inexpensive wines like this Lois grüner veltliner, made from purchased grapes, are organic. Lois is fresh and easygoing, deliciously spicy, herbal and peppery, a lovely harbinger of spring. Enjoy with salads and seafood.
Best To Pair With Pasta: Castagnoli Chianti Classico 2013
Heres a free wine tip: If you find shopping for wine overwhelming , then focus on finding an importer you like. Wine importers work with a hand-selected portfolio of winemakers, and they test each wine rigorously. If you find an importer whose taste you trust, its likely that youll enjoy many of the wines in their portfolio.
Kermit Lynch is perhaps the most famous example of this. Hes built his portfolio on clean, classic wines. This Italian Chianti, imported by Kermit Lynch, is no exception. Expect a tart wine with notes of red cherry. The juicy acidity in this bottle makes it extremely food-friendly. It has enough ripe fruit flavor to pair well with saucy pasta, and it will make any tomato dish sing.
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Penfolds Koonunga Hill Shiraz
An entry-level offering from Australias most notable winery, this wine showcases the countrys distinctive practice of blending Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz. Thirty-five percent Cab Sauv provides solid structure, with smooth tannins and bracing acidity, while 65 percent Shiraz fills in the blanks with rich, ripe red fruit and brambly berries. Price: $13
Best Northern California: Raeburn Pinot Noir 2019
Courtesy of Wine.com
- Region: California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley
- ABV: 14.5%
- Tasting Notes: Red berry fruit, spices, mocha, cola on the finish
Pinot Noir grapes fulfill their highest potential growing in maritime climates, and the Raeburn Winery, with its Russian River appellations engulfed by the Pacific Ocean air, has this in spades. With a mission statement devoted to a love of the land and sustainable practices, Raeburns wines are truly the fruit of the earth.
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Zaccagnini Il Vino Dal Tralcetto Montepulciano Dabruzzo 2015
Not to be confused with regional wine Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, a Tuscan red made with Sangiovese, Montepulciano is a red variety commonly grown across central and southern Italy, most notably in the Abruzzo region. Its wines are bold, black-fruit driven, and refreshing three characteristics this bottle offers in abundance. Price: $15
Pierre Sparr Crmant Dalsace Brut Ros Nv
Some of the best deals to be had in sparkling wine arrive via the various Crémant-producing regions in France. This example from Alsace, a 100 percent Pinot Noir, smells like crushed strawberries and serves up juicy fruit on the palate. Simultaneously heady and refreshing, this sparkling rosé is where its at. Average price: $19.
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Best Pinot Noir: Talbott Kali Hart Pinot Noir 2017
Courtesy of Wine.com
- Region: California, Central Coast, Monterey
- ABV: 14.6%
- Tasting Notes: Bing cherry, tilled earth, espresso bean, caramel
Winemaker David Coventry makes the most of the land at Talbott Vineyards, known to specialize in both chardonnay and pinot noir. Using traditional techniques straight out of Burgundy, their pinot grapes are fermented in open-air tanks to allow more oxygen flow to achieve their more sumptuous flavors. This is a best in class example because of its balance of ripe California fruit and Old World complexity. Sweet, silken red berry fruit intermingle with polished, grippy tannins to give this wine a long, spicy finish.
Red Wine On The Cheap
After a busy week with my kids and work, I like to relax with a nice glass of wine. Most consider wine a pricey treat, but there are deals to be had. I called my friend Joe Gerardi, a wine buyer for Stamford Wine & Liquor, to find the best vino for your buck.
This family-owned vineyard is located in California, where they’ve been growing grapes since 1938. They offer a wide variety of reds, including Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah, that are a definite step up from the “Two-Buck Chuck” .
Nero d’Avola is Sicily’s most popular red grape and offers a vibrant taste of cherry, blackberry jam and juniper berries. This wine pairs nicely with mushrooms or a fresh brick-oven cheese pizza.
This Chilean winery was founded in 1993 and in 2003 had its first organic-certified harvest of grapes! They carry many inexpensive reds, including Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot.
Price range:4) Beaujolais-Villages, Georges Du Boeuf
French wines with labels from these villages supposedly produce higher quality grapes than the rest of Beaujolais. Georges Du Boeuf is one of the largest producers in the Beaujolais region, and the wines tend to be lively and fruity. Have them slightly chilled.
Price range:5) Delas
This winery was founded 160 years ago in Côtes du Rhône, France. The 2007 vintage is one of their tastiest.
Price range:Why Wine Is a Healthy EatAnother Option: Sangria
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