crowd-pleasing wines at BC liquor store?
I need to pick up some wine for a gathering of (I think) around 20 people. Does anyone have any suggestions for affordable, easy-drinking wine (probably a red and a white) I could find at the BC liquor stores (Vancouver)?
Also, any tips on estimating how many bottles to buy?
Thanks for all the suggestions, everyone! That pdf file from Gismondi looks to be pretty useful in the future.
In the end, partly based on what was available, I ended up buying a gewurztraminer from Sumac Ridge for the white (unfortunately, the store was out of Dr Loosen), and a malbec from Argentina (Dona Paula), and a merlot/malbec/cabernet from Argentina (Patagonia?). The former 2 were definitely popular... and lucky me, I have a few of the malbec left over!
a book you might find interesting for parties like this in the future (as you likely don't have time now) is:
Had a glass : top 100 wines for 2008 under $20 / Kenji Hodgson, James Nevison.
there are two editions before this that i know of (2006, 2007) and you should be able to get it at the local library (which is where i first saw it). anyway, it's published out of north van, and therefore contains wines possible to get in BC.
Thanks for all the suggestions so far! More details... looks like there are about 25 people RSVP'd... so I'll probably plan for about 30, in case there are some last-minute additions. It's a setting where we'll be getting together around 5pm, and I suspect people will be sipping into late at night. I'll also be grabbing a mix of beer and some non-alcoholic drinks.
I must add my favorite value wine - Stickleback, made by Heartland winery in Australia.
The red is generally a Shiraz/Cab/Grenache blend.
The white, a Chard/Semillion/Verdelho blend. (The back of the label will tell you for sure)
Also discovered a new Spanish Syrah that is quite tasty
Agree with Viognier and Pinot Grigio, though I have some other suggestions than what fmed offered (though both his rec's are tasty). The Viognier is a true French Viognier from Paul Mas, and the Grigio is from Prospect Winery in the Okanagan. Gotta plug at least one local wine!
If wine is all that is being served, and this is a full evening, then I would pick up 1 bottle per drinker, for a total of 20 bottles if everyone is drinking. If beer and liquor are also being served then 12 bottles of wine should be fine. Generaly the ratio of red to white is 2:1, but this changes based on weather, setting and food.
If you want more specific numbers twinkie, just reply with more details of your gathering.
I think of Aussie shiraz, shiraz/cabernet or grenache/shiraz/mourvedre; Chilean or Argentine malbec when I think of crowd pleasing reds - cheap.
I like http://www.bcliquorstores.com/en/products/166553
The $12 dollar mark of Aussie shiraz and shiraz blends are great bang for the buck.
I'd love to hear other people's opinions on good, inexpensive crowd-pleasers.
I budget 1 bottle a person assuming some people are bringing their own. My friends drink more red than white...so 14 reds and 6 whites for 20. People who like to drink wine will bring a couple of bottles of their own....perhaps to 35 bottles in total.
Good call on the Aussie grenache/shiraz/mourvedre! That was the first wine that popped into my head when I saw the title of the post. Check out D'Arenberg Stump Jump. Easily one of the easiest drinking reds I've had. $15/bottle.
For a white, I really like Rieslings. Dr. Loosen's from Germany goes for about $17 or $18/bottle. Very tasty and sure to please. As fmed said too, viogniers and pinot grigios are great too.
For a really inexpensive jug wine, the go to in my household has been Giacondi Sangiovese. You can get a liter and a half for $13. Really just a plain Italian red that won't offend anyone but it won't stand out either. An ideal wine for general drinking where people aren't really into wine.
Also, I should mention Tony Gismondi's excellent article for Wine Access detailing the results of the International Value Wine Awards. I refer to this all the time. http://www.gismondionwine.com/my_file...