Spring is officially here, and with the arrival of more sunny days, it’s ideal to have some light, bright wines to sip on.  Well, we’ve come across a handful of bottles, enticingly priced at $15 or less, which are perfect to open on a warm afternoon or evening. Cheers!

Yalumba 2016 Viognier

Grape(s):Viognier

Region: Eden Valley, California

Price: 10-15

Tasting Notes:

The nose weaves together aromas of apricots, banana, and peaches with traces of ginger and white blossoms. A lush mouth-feel frames flavors of apricot, peach, and tropical fruit that meld with hints of orange blossoms and ginger on the palate. Nice and round with a balanced acidity, open a bottle when serving creamy (coconut milk based) Indian dishes.

Rating: 90

Wente 2017 “Morning Fog” Chardonnay

Grape(s): 98% Chardonnay & 2% Gewurztraminer

Region: Livermore Valley, Ca

Price: 10-15

Tasting Notes:

Aromatics of pears, lemons, and pineapples mingle among expressions of toasty vanilla and white blossoms on the nose. The palate takes shape with flavors of pear, lemon, and pineapple leading the way before hints of vanilla, toasty oak, and spring flowers follow. Focused fruit and subtle barrel influence lead to a balance of flavors and clean acidity.

Rating: 89

Maddalena 2018 Rose

Grape(s): Graciano, Syrah, Primitivo, and Grenache

Region: Paso Robles, California

Price: 10-15

Tasting Notes:

One is drawn into a glass by aromas of peaches, pomegranates, and strawberries. A lively acidity frames flavors of mango, cranberry, and strawberry along with hints of minerals and spring flowers. A robust, mouthwatering Rose, it’s may not be for fans of Provence, but fans of a bolder style will really enjoy.

Rating: 90

Carius 2016 Cairanne

Grape(s): 70% Grenache, 20% Carignan, & 10% Syrah

Region: Catalanes, France

Price: 15-20

Tasting Notes:

Aromatics of plums, dark cherries, and blackberries mingle among suggestions of spice, violets, and minerals on the nose. The palate offers up flavors of cherry, raspberry, and plum that unfold into nuances of herbs, spice, and spring flowers. Polished tannins and nice fruit make this a very approachable wine.

Rating: 91