Another year has passed which means it's time to update our annual list of The Best Red Wines Under $20!
Once again, we tasted so much great wine the past year that it is extremely hard to narrow this list down to just 10 wines. Which also means there are LOTS of great wines that didn't make this list. Check out our other "Best Of" lists for those.
That said, this year's list just happens to focus in on the USA and Italy (with a wine from Uruguay thrown in for good measure.) It's a combination of the absolute best tasting wines we had this year as well as those with the most extreme value. Covering a number of different varieties and styles, there's something for everyone on our list of the best red wines under $20.
Looking for white wines and rosés? Check out our Top 10 White and Rosé list here!
A perfect 10 Taste rating from us and lots of big scores from others.
If you have yet to explore Barbera from Amador then you, my friend, are missing out! This estate grown beauty is a great example.
An over-the-top delicious Bulk Buy.
We found ourselves disappointed at a lot of the Napa Valley selections at Trader Joe's this year as they tended to be VERY young and not yet ready for primetime. One of the exceptions, however, was this ripe and ready Meritage blend.
This single vineyard, dry-farmed, naturally made beauty gets a Perfect 10 Taste rating and one of our highest overall scores ever!
A blend of 68% old vine Carignane, 27% Grenache and 5% Syrah aged 31 months in neutral oak barrels that is so rich and full of flavor that it makes you wonder what's wrong with a lot of the other wines you've been tasting.
A can’t miss Costco pick for the Cab lovers!
We've reviewed (and loved) this wine so many times over the past 8-10 years that we've lost count. When we find a wine priced this low that is this impressive year after year, we can't help but sing its praises.
Terrific Tannat from Uruguay!
We're huge fans of Tannat and there are some fabulous examples coming from Uruguay. This one makes a return to our Top 10 list.
A pair of Perfect 10 Taste Ratings!
Spot #5 is a two-fer with these two excellent wines from Scott Harvey. While our Insider Deal price is expired, these wines have been some of the most popular we have ever offered so we will no doubt be looking to bring them back.
Bulk Buy Barbera from Piedmont.
As you can tell, we were on a bit of Barbera kick this year, exploring the best from all over the world.
Now this is some good Merlot!
The tiny Chalk Hill AVA is located in the northern corner of the Russian River Valley, just to the south of Knights Valley and Alexander Valley. The soil, while not actually chalk, is made up of white volcanic ash. With only 5 wineries within the AVA, this is an exclusive area with not many bottles available under $20 so we were quite excited to see this one at Trader Joe's.
A new producer and a new price turn out to be a very good combination...
Tasty Brunello under $20! Enough said...
A stunningly delicious blend of 80% Syrah and 20% Petit Verdot.
We could have just as easily put the Stolpman Vineyards La Cuadrilla, the Meeker ZSM or the Onesta Mentida in this spot but we didn't want to dominate this list with all Insider Deals - suffice to say that we mean it when we say that we source our very favorite wines for our deals!
And that's it for the 2021 list! Curious which wines made the list of the best cheap red wine in previous years? Check out the results below.
The 2020 Top 10 Red Wines Under $20:
10) Revelation Cabernet-Merlot – An Eye-Opener
The 2019 Top 10 Red Wines Under $20:
10) Kirkland Signature Toscana - A Sensational Super Tuscan
The 2018 Top 10 Red Wines Under $20:
10) La Posta Armando Bonarda - A Bonanza From Mendoza
The 2017 Top 10 Red Wines Under $20:
TIE 10) Castello di Gabbiano Chianti Classico Riserva – Classic Indeed!
Want more of our favorite picks? Be sure to check out our "Best Of" listings for individual lists by variety and region.