Our dear friend Katell Pleven is a wine importer in New York City. We asked her to share with us some of the best new wines she has found for under $25 and that are widely available. Print out this list and take it to your wine shop - chances are they will have some, if not all of the selections below. If they don't have the wine, they can order from Katell's company, IPO Wine.
You can learn more about Katell and all of the wines she has recommended by going to her company's website
Great for Mother's Day brunch:
Louis de Grenelle NV, Saumur Rose (approximate retail 18.75)
A very affordable sparkling rose, it’s made with Cabernet Franc from a winery that is practicing organic viticulture (in other words they are waiting for certification) in France’s Loire Valley. The wines are made in the “traditional method” which means, like champagne, the second fermentation happens in the bottle. That’s when all the bubbles are trapped inside the bottle making the wine sparkling.
This wine can be found at Wholefoods Middletown, NJ location.
Domaine de Martinolles, NV (approximate retail 17.00)
Another delicious and affordable sparkling wine, made in the Methode Ancestrale by letting the wine ferment fully in the bottle thereby trapping the bubbles. This wine is made from a grape found in the Languedoc region called, Mauzac. This has a crisp apple and citrusy flavor, with plenty of creaminess and body. A great way to toast something, or celebrate not having to spend all your money on a bottle of wine.
Goes well with chicken or fish:
Domaine de la Fruitiere 2007, Jardin de La Fruitiere (approximate retail 12.00)
Also from the Loire Valley, but this one comes from an area closer to the coast, where the Loire River empties out to the Atlantic Ocean. This wine is made from 50% each Chardonnay and the wonderful Muscadet grape called Melon de Bourgogne. This winery makes a wonderful Muscadet. The wine famous for going very well with oysters, this version is perhaps a bit more flexible as the Chardonnay gives it a bit more body. Body is what makes this wine able to handle chicken, and other heartier seafood dishes.
This wine can be found at Fresh Direct, Best Cellars, and in Brooklyn at Slope Cellars.
Pair with a cheese board:
Domaine de la Fruitiere 2006, Chardonnay (approximate retail 14.00)
This is another wine made from the talented team at Domaine de la Fruitiere. This is 100% chardonnay, the wine is as just as easy to drink, delicious lemon cream pie notes, and has a bit more body. That makes it a wonderfully simple wine to pair with cheese, white meats even pork and ham dishes. Everyone loves chardonnay when it tastes this good.
The wine can be found at Wholefoods (Middletown location).
Domaine Julien Meyer, 2006 Pinot Gris (approximate retail 18.00)
Well, I don’t see anyone slowing down their appreciation for this grape, it’s so easy to match with food or just drink on it’s own, known in Italy as Pinot Grigio, the grape originally was found in the Burgundy region in the Middle Ages. The popularity of the wine spread to Switzerland then later to Italy. The current most popular areas to grow the wine are northern Italy and in France’s beautiful Alsace region where this one is from. This wine is biodynamically grown, which means without any chemical fertilizers or pesticides.
Domaine du Salvard 2007 Sauvignon Blanc Unique (approximate retail 17.00)
This Sauvignon Blanc stopped me in my tracks, it’s the first wine that I have ever tasted from the Loire Valley in France where I thought “oh, this is from New Zealand”. It’s got zest and minerality and offers the best of both the traditional (France) and new World (New Zealand) by offering lots of flavor without sacrificing minerality and delicacy.
This wine can be found at the Wine Library in NJ, and they ship wine nationally.
Good with a cheese board, salamis and olives:
Cedric Vincent 2006 Beaujolais (approximate retail 23.00)
Made from Gamay, one of the most lip smacking easy to drink and grapey-grapes. It’s a perfect spring-time wine because it’s not too heavy on the palate, though most people associate it with the Fall when the Noveau wines are first released. Because of it’s high acidity and delicate cherry, cranberry notes, it’s a wine I’d recommend with creamy high fat cheeses like Goat’s Milk and anything on a charcuterie plate. There’s been such a proliferation of wine bars around the country and most of them offer some kind of platter of assorted cheeses and meats, Beaujolais is always a safe bet as it’s usually a good match with the flavors of cured meats.
Great for red meat stews and roasts:
Chateau Pesquie 2005 Rouge (approximate retail 16.00)
This wine is a blend of old vines of sweet juicy Grenache and spicy Syrah, making it a rich, full bodied and hearty wine with flavors typical of the southern Rhone wines, like licorice, black olives, dark cherry, and pepper. A great wine to match with stews, and roasted meats.
This wine can be found at PJ’s Wine Warehouse in upper Manhattan, but they do ship wherever in the states it’s permitted to send wine through the mail.
Great with meats and red sauce pasta dishes:
Malvira 2004 Langhe Nebbiolo (approximate retail 23.00)
Made from Nebbiolo like it’s more pricey neighbors Barbaresco and Barolo. The Langhe hills are south and west of the Tanaro river in the Cuneo province in Piedmont, northern Italy. Along with white truffles, the region is famous for making wine with this tannic, tart, and herbaceous grape.
Mas Que Vinos 2006 (approximate retail 15.00)
First of all this wine is made by the charming and talented Alexandra Schmedes, a reason in and of itself to recommend the wine. This is a wine which has received accolades from the top wine writers in America and Spain. Alexandra makes it with 100% Tempranillo in the central La Meseta region of Spain. It’s aged 5 months in French and American oak, has a rich full body and notes reminiscent of dark blue fruits.
If you can't find one of the above wines, have your wine shop contact Katell at IPO Wine.