Not only is Jordan Salcito Momofuku’s very capable beverage director, she’s also the founder of Bellus Wines, which makes her our go-to wino when it comes to all things according to the grape. Now that it’s cold out, our weeknights and weekends are often comprised of bunkering up with lots of red wine (that and Chinese food are the only essentials we need to be happy).
What will you be drinking this weekend? We picked 5 of our favorite wines from Salcito’s previous lists under $20, because who doesn’t go to a liquor store with that goal in mind?
This ‘boxed wine’ is hands-down one of the best deals in the wine world. Michael Schmelzer of the esteemed Monte Bernardi estate in Tuscany saw a void in the market for excellent-quality wine bottled in TetraPak, so he started to bottle organically-grown Sangiovese in recyclable one-litre boxes and offer high-quality wine at insanely low prices. This is a perfect wine for a picnic, hike, the beach, or dinner at home for that matter.
Luyt is originally from Burgundy, but when he visited Chile a few years ago, he believed that the land was capable of producing extraordinary wines and decided to make Chile his home instead of returning to France. Today, he’s making compelling, delightful examples from lesser-known grapes like Carignan and Paìs.
Few Zinfandels have more balance and focus than those crafted by Ridge, the iconic Sonoma winery overseen by Paul Draper since 1969. This bottling, ‘Three Valleys,’ is bright and lively, fruit forward and gently refreshing at once. Fruit is sourced from several vineyards throughout Sonoma and is an excellent, classy red for less than twenty bucks.
Adi Badenhorst (of South Africa) makes a beautifully accessible ‘red blend’ from Swartland, South Africa.
I love the wines and narratives of the La Posta line-up from Argentina. The ‘Paulucci’ vineyard, made from Malbec grapes near Mendoza, Argentina, is a particular favorite, and it’s a steal.