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We continue our series focusing on high quality wines, with wide distribution, that can be found for $20 or less.  So add them to your shopping list, scoff at those more expensive bottles, and enjoy quality, even on a budget. Happy drinking!

Tait “Ball Buster” 2013 Shiraz

Grape(s): 75% Shiraz, 13% Merlot, & 12% Cabernet Sauvignon

Region: Barossa Valley, Australia

Price: 15-20

Tasting Notes:

Jammy fruit comes forth on the nose, as blackberries, plums, and cherries blend together. A sip delivers flavors of blackberry and red plum moving into accents of cinnamon, dark chocolate, and herbs. A silly name but not a silly wine; plenty to like here. Enjoy with short ribs.

Rating: 90

 

Hope Ends 2015 Red Blend

Grape(s): Shiraz, Grenache, and Malbec

Region: South Australia

Price: 5-10

Tasting Notes:

A nice fruit-forward nose with accents of chocolate and caramel rises up from a glass. On the palate, the wine is smooth with lush fruit flavors of blackberries, plums, and black cherries that mingle among hints of dark chocolate and toasty caramel. Friendly but with good balance, it’s a very good value.

Rating: 90

Gnarly Head 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon

Grape(s): Cabernet Sauvignon (and we’re guessing one or two other blenders)

Region: California

Price: 5-10

Tasting Notes:

Lots of black cherries, blackberries, and plums play with highlights of clove, mocha, and white pepper on the nose. The palate is lifted by a good structure and showcases rich dark fruit that blends with sweet spice, chocolate, and roast coffee. Unlike most value Cabernet, this wine has a bit of weight and depth on the mid-palate. A very good buy.

Rating: 90

Rutherford Hill 2013 Merlot

Grape(s): 79% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Syrah, & 3% Melbec

Region: Napa Valley, Ca

Price: 15-20

Tasting Notes:

The nose is quite inviting with lush blackberries, black cherries, and a nod of currants mixing together among hints of toasty vanilla. That nice dark fruit is framed by polished, cocoa tannins and the finish leaves dark chocolate, vanilla, and earth lingering. Fine complexity and structure are big pluses for this wine. Certainly delivers for the price.

Rating: 90