There are remarkable values that take the pressure off your entertaining expenses without compromising good taste. We’ve assembled three wines to cover all the bases like a pro, but at minor-league prices.
Tissot Crémant du Jura Extra Brut NV
$27, Potomac Selections
Crémant is the French term for a not-quite Brut but still dry bubbly, and there are many variations. Tissot hails from the Jura district in the foothills of the Rhône Alps, and its Crémant is, like fine Champagne, dominated by Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. It’s an elegant, fresh, and sophisticated sparkler with just the right price tag.
Castle Rock Central Coast Chardonnay 2011
$13, Vignobles L.V.D.H. U.S.A.
An oaky, buttery Chardonnay from California is perhaps the most widely appreciated style of white wine in the country. But many examples run to $20 and beyond. Get the party started with Castle Rock’s version, which displays flashy tropical-and-pear fruit tones and a creamy vanilla character.
Montebuena Rioja Cuvée KPF 2010
$10, Kysela Pere et Fils Ltd.
Want a red with all the style and pleasure that only a pedigreed growing region like Spain’s Rioja district can provide, but don’t want to shell out the big bucks? Then we found your wine. It’s packed with ripe cherry, plum, spicy vanilla, and even a suggestion of cocoa. Pick up a bottle (or even a case) as a little gift to yourself.