Classic and widely available Pinot Grigio at a great price, we review the Zenato Delle Venezie Pinot Grigio. 100% Pinot Grigio from the Delle Venezie DOC in northeastern Italy. The wine is fermented in stainless steel and has 5 g/L of residual sugar. … [Read more...]
The Best Italian Wines
Italian wine can be confusing, but this is what happens when wine has been made in a place for hundreds and hundreds of years! Just don't let the confusion stop you from exploring the many fascinating regions and wines of Italy, it is one of our very favorite spots for great value wines (as well as a few of our favorites over $20, or "Saturday Splurges" as we like to call them).
Sangiovese is one of the major grapes in Italy, being the backbone of such renowned Italian wines as Chianti and Brunello di Montalcino as well as many Super Tuscans. With its distinctive cherry and often rustic flavors, this medium-bodied, savory variety takes to oak aging very well. And just as you would expect it's fantastic with all kinds of Italian foods including pizza and pretty much anything in tomato-based sauces. (See our Guide To The Best Pizza Wines for more on this.)
Chianti is also a great example of just how confusing Italian wine can be. With 8 different sub-zones, varying rules on production, a classification called Superiore that can be used in 7 of the 8 zones, and a number of wines that could be labeled either as Chianti or things like Brunello di Montalcino or Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, it's no wonder consumers are confused. I guess this is what happens where your wine region has been around since the early 1700s -- 300 years later there are a lot of rules! (For more on this see our dedicated Guide To Chianti Wines.)
A few of the often-overlooked areas in Italy; however, may give the best value.
Alto Adige in the northern part of the country offers fascinating and affordable red and white wines.
Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea likewise offers tremendous value in varieties like Nero d'Avola that you generally don’t find anywhere else.
Puglia, which extends onto the heel of the boot of Italy is renowned for their Primitivo and Salice Salento wines made from Negroamaro.
On the other side of Italy's boot (the shin) is Campania, home to one of our very favorite varieties - Aglianico.
Of course, we'll also offer some tried and true favorites from places like Tuscany and beyond and even the occasional Amarone and Barolo splurge. And if you really want to keep it cheap you can check our dedicated list of $8 Italian Reds - all delicious and $8 or less.
Read on for our list of The Best Italian Wine, Mostly Under $20!
We check out the latest vintage of the Kirkland Signature Toscana from Costco. The 2020 vintage does not specify the blend but I imagine it is similar to the 2018 which was 75% Sangiovese, 22% Merlot and 3% Cabernet Sauvignon. It is from Tuscany, Italy. … [Read more...]
A deliciously sweet and bubbly Bulk Buy, we review the new Kirkland Signature Moscato d'Asti. New Kirkland Signature wine alert! And this one is for the sweet wine lovers. … [Read more...]
Produced since 1910, we review a classic, dry example of the sparkling red wine Lambrusco, the Lini 910 Labrusca Rosso. 85% Salamino and 15% Ancellotta red sparkling wine from Emilia-Romagna, Italy. … [Read more...]
Find it and try it. We review the Attems Ramato Friuli Pinot Grigio, a unique and delicious expression of Pinot Grigio made like a rosé. 100% Pinot Grigio from the Friuli DOC in Italy. … [Read more...]
The Kirkland Signature Friuli Grave Pinot Grigio from Costco, still only $4.99 and packed with flavor. This might be the best vintage yet. Pinot Grigio from Friuli Grave, Italy. … [Read more...]
THIS LIMITED TIME OFFER IS NOW EXPIRED! Sign up below to make sure you get the next one. Learn more about our winery direct INSIDER DEALS here. Take pizza night to the next level! Don't miss the Pomaro Monferrato Rosso Piemonte Barbera from La Bollina. We love a good … [Read more...]
Costco's take on an iconic wine rarely found under $20, we review the latest vintage of the Kirkland Signature Barolo DOCG. Plus we once again track down the true producer behind the label. Nebbiolo from Serralunga d'Alba, Piedmont, Italy. While we don't know the exact … [Read more...]
A $10 Southern Italian red blend from Trader Joe's, we review the Ruggero di Bardo Anniversario Apulia Rosso. An undisclosed blend from Puglia, Italy. … [Read more...]
A very easy to drink example of the variety, we review the Caldora Montepulciano d'Abruzzo. 100% Montepulciano from vineyards in Chieti in the Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC of Italy. The wine spends a minimum of 9 months in oak barrels before being bottled and is vegan … [Read more...]
Revisiting a highly quaffable find from Aldi, the Villanella Pinot Grigio. Pinot Grigio from Valdadige, Italy which covers the Trentino-Alto Adige area as well as into Veneto. It's a great spot for Pinot Grigio. … [Read more...]
Kudos to Trader Joe's for offering an extremely rare variety from Puglia and at $10 no less! We check out the latest vintage of the Ruggero di Bardo Susumaniello. Susumaniello (yes, that's a grape variety) from Puglia, Italy. It is pronounced sue-sue-man-yell-oh. The wine … [Read more...]
A deliciously affordable bubbly bottle from Costco, the Kirkland Signature Asolo Prosecco Superiore DOCG. Prosecco sparkling wine made with the Glera grape from Asolo, Veneto, Italy. … [Read more...]
A tart and tasty $5.99 porch pounder from Aldi, we check out the latest vintage of the Giretto Pinot Grigio Delle Venezie DOC. Pinot Grigio from Delle Venezie DOC, Italy. … [Read more...]
Another sweet and tasty Italian red blend from Aldi, we review the Elettra Red Blend. A blend of Primitivo and Negroamaro from Puglia, Italy. … [Read more...]
Tasty enough for just $4.99, we review the Grifone Bianco from Trader Joe's. An unidentified white blend from Italy. The wine is made from organic grapes and is vegan friendly. … [Read more...]
A splurge-worthy find, we review the Mazzei Tenuta Belguardo Maremma Toscana. 85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Cabernet Franc from Tuscany, Italy. … [Read more...]
Surprisingly good Sangiovese for just $4.99, we review the Grifone Sangiovese from Trader Joe's. 100% Sangiovese from Puglia, Italy. The wine is fermented in stainless steel. … [Read more...]
An excellent Costco find that goes excellently with Volpi Foods Wine Salame, the Cafaggio Chianti Classico Riserva. 100% Sangiovese from vineyards located in Cafaggio, Conca d'Oro, Panzano in Chianti, Tuscany, Italy. The wine is aged for 18 months in 65 hl Slavonian oak … [Read more...]
Revisiting a favorite Costco find! The Basilica Cafaggio Single Estate Chianti Classico. 100% Sangiovese from vineyards in Panzano within the Chianti Classico zone in Tuscany, Italy. The wine is aged in Slavonian oak for 12 months. … [Read more...]
Have a juicy, fruity good time with this beauty of a Barbera from Marchesi di Barolo, the Maraia Barbera del Monferrato. Available at Costco. 100% Barbera from Maranzana, Piedmont, Italy. The wine is aged for one year in Slavonian oak barrels and has 2.1 g/L of residual … [Read more...]
Made from partially dried grapes, we review the latest vintage of the Zenato Alanera Rosso Veronese. 55% Corvina, 25% Rondinella, 10% Corvinone, 5% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Merlot from the Costalunga Estate in Veneto, Italy. 50% of the grapes used to produce the wine are … [Read more...]
We review the silky smooth and sweet Patroferno Appassimento Puglia Primitivo from Trader Joe's. Primitivo from Puglia, Italy. It is made in the appassimento method using dried grapes. … [Read more...]
Another nice find at Trader Joe's for just $6.99, the Campi Rudi Appassimento Rosso Puglia IGT Passito. A blend of Negroamaro, Primitivo, Nero di Troya and Sangiovese. It is made in the appassimento method using dried grapes, in this case through a secondary fermentation … [Read more...]
Take pasta night to the next level with this super delicious Super Tuscan, the Tenuta Luce Lucente Toscana IGT. 50% Merlot and 50% Sangiovese from Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy. The wine spends 12 months in a oak barriques, 85% of which are new and it has 4 g/L of residual … [Read more...]
A silky smooth wine made from a little-known Italian grape, we review the Tenute Rubino Oltreme Susumaniello DOC Brindisi Rosso. The wine is made from the rare Susumaniello grape grown in vineyards in Jaddico and Brindisi, Puglia, Italy. It spends 10 months in steel tanks. … [Read more...]