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Need white wine suggestions for summer guests

Have always enjoyed the New Zealand sauvignon blancs but they have inched up to $14 a bottle in our Northeast environs. Would like suggestions around $10 or less...no Chilean wines due to allergic reaction to their sulfites. Also, we don't favor Chardonnay so that should narrow the field. Thanks, in advance, for your suggestions.

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  1. Safeway in CA is running some really good sales on SB, I saw yesterday. Dunno if you have one in your area.

    In general, though, Bonny Doon Pacific Rim Dry Rielsing comes to mind as a good option for you.

    1 Reply
    1. re: whiner

      Just a note. There is no longer such a thing as Bonny Doon Pacific Rim Dry Riesling. Bonny Doon sold off the label a while back. Truth be told, I haven't tried the new version of the wine, but past quality is no longer a guarantee of future performance.


    2. check out the white wines from Washington State... tasty Rieslings and non-oaky chardonnays are what come first to mind, and lots to choose from in the $9 - $12 price range. great qpr

      2 Replies
      1. re: ChefJune

        I second that WA emotion. I remember there being some nice Sauvignon Blanc - Chardonnay blends, crisp, minerally and not at all buttery/oaky which is probably what you don't like in Chardonnay.

        1. re: tmso

          Chauteu Ste. Michelle makes a dry reisling that is reasonably priced and will please a crowd. I served it at my wedding.

        1. Vinho Verde (Broadbent)
          Gruner Veltliner (Loimer "Lois", Huber "Hugo")
          South African Chenin (Man Vintners, Ken Forrester)

          Also, I feel compelled to point out that Chilean wines are not, as a rule, higher in sulfites than other wines. In fact, sulfites occur naturally in ALL wines-- they're present in the grapes themselves. Now, they are ADDED to wine on occasion as a preservative, but no more in Chile than in many many other places around the world. Check out Terra Andina, Cousino Macul, and Montes Alpha for a re-introduction to well made Chilean wine.

          1. A decent wine store might have some gruner veltliners imported by Terry Theise for about $11 a bottle. These are one liter bottles as opposed to 750 ml. Those wines can be surprising good.
            Also, look for sauvignon blanc or chenin blanc from South Africa.

            1. Just a comment on the "no Chilean wines due to allergic reaction to their sulfites".

              Chilean wines are not the only wines to have sulfites. Almost all wine has sulfites. Your reaction is probably due to something else. It is absolutely impossible to say only Chilean whites give you a reaction.
              Sorry to be a buzzkill... ;-)



              1 Reply
              1. re: WineUnleashed

                I do agree, regarding the constituant elements of the wines. However, as I have only had one Chilean (regardless of price-point), that I'd ever buy, I'd be in the OP's corner, though probably for different reasons.


              2. Like you, we like a number of the NZ SBs that are available. We also regularly purchase Big House White at about $8.99, Folie a Duex Menage a Trois White at $8.99. ( We are located in SOCAL and these wines can generally be located at these prices or less.)

                5 Replies
                1. re: scrappydog

                  I don't want to sound like a broken record, but Big House White is another former Bonny Doon label that is no longer made by BD. Quality may well be less than it was before.

                  On a more postive note, perhaps the OP might like Pinot Grigios. Many from California and from Veneti in Italy are pretty meh - but some Italian PGs from Friuli and Trentino/Altoadige (sp?)/the dolomites are dry but flavorful.

                  I also have had some reasonably priced Argentinian Torrontes and, as others have mentioned, South African Chenin Blancs that were tasty.

                  1. re: Ed Dibble

                    I am real hot on Greek whites. They are a fantastic value and certainly worth exploring. If you are a fan of NZ sauv blancs, I would suggest checking out vinho verdes from Portugal -- great crisp acidity. You can certainly get most for under $10.

                    On another note hopegoode, I would be interested to hear your reaction with the Chilean white. As an allergist, I am well aware of sulfite reactions (not really a true allergy). What is unique about the Chilean wine that you reacted to and what was your reaction?

                    1. re: Ed Dibble

                      I completely understand that Big House White is part of the brand that Bonny Doon sold. My comment was that we like the wine - I liked it when Bonny doon produced it and I still like it and buy it now. To me, it is a good wine at the requested price point. Your opinion may differ. I have seen it as low as $7.19 locally, but it is regularly available for $8.99. If there is any change, I think the most recent vintage I have tasted (2006) has more fruit (citrus), which I am guessing may come from the amount of Muscat in the blend

                      Agree on your reccomendation for Argentine Torrontes.

                      1. re: scrappydog

                        Torrentes is beautiful. And cheap. You can find it for $5.

                        If you're feeling flush, try the Susana Balbo.

                        And, from France,


                        No more than $10.

                        Have you read the threads on good wines for under $10?

                        1. re: maria lorraine

                          Heck yeah Picpoul!! There are usually a handful of inexpensive wines from the Langudoec area, great suggestion!!!!!

                  2. In the PHX Area, Kim Crawford NZ Marlborough SB has been selling for ~ UA$11.00/ 0.75 at Costco. It is not my fav., but at that price-point should be just outside your upper-end.


                    1. There's a rec for Geyser Peak Sauvignon blanc by jjrzut in this thread...


                      BTW, I picked up the Kim Crawford SB for $10.75 or so w/ coupon last week at Costco (NorCal).

                      1. Try a pinot gris from Oregon or a gruner veltliner.

                        10 Replies
                        1. re: kelarry

                          Know any for $10 and under you could recommend?

                          1. re: maria lorraine

                            We do not drink a lot of GV, but we have purchased Pollerhof GrĂ¼ner Veltliner 2007 (Austria) a couple of times this summer. It comes in a 1 liter bottle and sells for $9.99 in SOCAL. It is a pleasant summer sipper. Nice wine for the price. 12% ABV.

                          2. re: kelarry

                            Anton Bauer gruner "Gmork". Adelsheim pinot gris comes in half bottles. It is gorgeous, and would fit the price range if you're willing to have a half bottle.

                            1. re: kelarry

                              Just wanted to respond to questions regarding reaction to Chilean wine. I only get red, itchy hands when I drink wines from that area. The condition goes away upon taking an antihistamine. Could it be from the pesticides from that area? I did note a similar reaction to grapes imported from Chile.

                              Thank you all for your varied suggestions. I will be trying the bottles over time and will give you feedback!

                              1. re: hopegoode

                                That is most certainly not a sulfite reaction. What you are reacting to who knows without actually looking at your hands during a reaction. It is unusual to get isolated hand pruritus, erythema with ingesting the wine (presumably not getting it directly on your hands). Also doubt the pesticide story as well for a number of reasons. I would love to do a blind challenge with Chilean wines vs wines from another area to see if these reactions were reproducible.

                                1. re: Bhutani

                                  At Last, a scientist on the board...

                                  Every good theory established via the hypothesis method MUST be reproducible :)

                                  1. re: Chicago Mike

                                    It is amazing how many hypotheses we are able to dispel by simple blind challenges. Not only is this especially useful for drug allergy but also for food allergies as well.

                                    1. re: Bhutani


                                      I have had that reaction when I unknowingly was given a glass of Chilean wine so I believe that it is not attributable to state of mind.

                                      1. re: hopegoode

                                        I don't deny the reaction or do I suggest that it was something supratentorial. However, there are almost always confounding issues that are in play. Without taking a thorough history though, I cannot tell you what other possible confounders there were. The best way to see if it is truly Chilean wines is to conduct a blind challenge in a controlled environment.

                                        1. re: Bhutani

                                          "Supratentorial" is definitely the best word I've come across today. Thanks!

                          3. Great Topic
                            Two favorites Tariquet Ugni Blanc Colombard blend &9.99

                            and Dry Creek Dry Chenin Blanc

                            These wines please the masses for summertime drinking. Salute.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: waitress

                              I'm curently enjoying a Vinho Verde which is I'm finding perfect for the weather. Low alcohol, frizzante, crisp, light . . .

                              And if I could politely address your statement:

                              "Also, we don't favor Chardonnay"

                              I'd just like to state that "Chardonnay" is not one thing. French Chablis is lean and flintly and angular. And if that includes the style of Chard that you don't favor I'll move on.