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Jun 23, 2009 02:27 PM

Budget friendly but high quality wine for a reunion

I am looking for some suggestions for budget friendly high quality wine (white or red) that will have mass appeal for a large group for a reunion. It will be warm so summer friendly wines are a bonus. Anyone have any good finds or old stand bys? Thanks in advance!

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  1. What price range do you consider budget friendly?

    3 Replies
      1. re: sunshineinaz

        Honestly, there is a lot you could find for under $15.

        New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc generally has mass appeal for a large group. It is a crisp, fruity white wine that tends to be fairly consistent across vintages and producers (within limits). I checked Total Wine which has three stores in Arizona (Glendale, Desert Ridge and Tuscon), and they have over 100 Sauvignon Blanc under $15. One of my favorites has always been Babich which they have listed at $11.49. They also have Villa Maria at this price which is good, Brancott and Kim Crawford are also good and under $13. They also have a number of California selections at reasonable prices. (They also have over 100 wines from Spain / Portugal under $15, quite a few that are decent wines.) Not sure if you are near on of the stores, but you could look online to see what is available and see if Costco or a local retailer had the same wine at a reasonable price.

        Maybe Bill Hunt, who also lives in Arizona, will weigh in with some suggestions based on knowledge of what is available in the local market.

        1. re: scrappydog

          For a red, I love the Celler de Capcanes Mas Donis Montsant. It's a Spanish syrah/grenache blend made from very old vines, and is absolutely delicious. Its juicy enough to appeal to a crowd, but interesting enough for wine people. It's a custom bottling for Eric Solomon, who's wines are well distributed nationally and retails for about $12-13 in here in Chicago.

    1. A good rose can be summer friendly and inexpensive.
      Sadly, no Arizona stores are listed on, so I can't make any suggestions.

      1. Protocolo White and Red from Soho Wine. I served 10 cases for my cookbook launch party with chefs and editors. The white taste crisp and elegant and the red has a nice mouth feel with some spice. My wine professional friends like it and my casual wine taster friends love it! It's the only house wine that I'll serve to friends for under $10 (It's actually $6.99).

          1. re: whiner

            Alamos Chard from Argentina, Ste Michelle Riesling from Wa State, Alamos Melbec, red, from Argentina, and yes good dry roses are great for an outdoor event or summer event. Pinot Grigio from Placido or Antinori Campo Grande Orvietto are also great summer whites.

          2. I really appreciate all of your feedback. I think the New Zealand SBs will be a great choice for the summer and our group and looking forward to trying some of your other recommendations. Again really appreciate your help!