I’m a big fan of wine- and have been drinking it since my 20′s. I am not an expert- but I have worked at some fine dining restaurants in my day- as well as taking several winery tours including a full wine excursion to the Napa vinyards. BUT– I’m a mom first, a wine connessour falls way down my list- and above all we have a budget we try to stick to every month. I’m just a mom who has a little bit of knowledge and a nice thirst for wine.
First things first: What is what? I don’t know a Cab from a Zin!
Cabernet Sauvignon- (Sometimes referred to as just ‘Cab’)- in my opinion it is the lightest of the reds. Easy to drink any time of year..at a wedding reception with hors’ devourers or just all by its lonesome.
Merlot- a fuller, heavier red. Merlot gets a bad rap as people tend to have one or two bad experiences and swear off of them- myself included. However- give them a try. I suggest wine tasting some at a wine shop or vineyard (if you can) before you buy.
Pino Noir- (Referred to frequently as ‘Pino’) Dark, rich, mysterious. I’m not exactly this fancy, so pretty much avoid the pino unless someone who knows what they’re doing does the ordering.
Zinfandel- (This is NOT White Zinfandel!) Rich red- great for a steak or a hearty meal. Love a good Zin in the middle of winter.
Riesling/Piesporter- (sweet German wines) So easy to drink you mom could do it–and probably does. I know mine does!
White Zinfandel- usually a ‘gateway’ wine- it was for me in college, haha! It’s pink and sweet. Not much more to say other than that!
Pino Grigio- Light, fruity, dry-ish, crisp wine. I have since graduated from pino grigio (our taste buds change over time, and I think our relationship just wore itself out) although I am currently drinking one now to review. And I like it..really! Just goes to show you never know until you try.
Chardonnay-oak-y, woods-y. Many either love or hate their Chard. I personally am in the school of the latter.
Sauvingnon Blanc- Pear always comes to mind. My favorite. Light, crisp, dry. A summer wine for sure. Find a good one and you’ll be a happy camper!
I went sweetest to ‘driest’. Dry is basically not sweet- but that doesn’t mean it can’t have flavors of pear or aromas of other fruits. If you don’t know what you’ll like hit up a wine tasting. Here in the Southeast we have Total Wine. They offer wine tastings on site- you can go in, see what they’ve got and take it from there. The most knowledge I ever gained was from doing wine tastings themselves. Occasionally if you buy a bottle the tasting is free. Either way tastings shouldn’t be expensive, if there is a fee at all.
Without further ado, here are some wines myself and some of my most favorite mom friends have picked out for you. These are some picks the average mom who wants to be able to drink wine/shop for wine but doesn’t have time to take a class from a sommlier, can use. Note- I chose wines under $20 AND ones that you can easily find at the grocery store. At least the grocery stores in my area- so hopefully you can find them at yours!
HERE’S THE 10:
1. Woodbridge Cabernet Sauvingnon (red) approx. $9.00 avail. pretty much everywhere. Good ‘starting on reds’ wine. Woodbridge also makes a halfway decent Sauvingnon Blanc too.
2. Veramonte Sauvingnon Blanc (dry white) approx. $9.99 avail at Bloom in the SE and Total Wine.
3. Piesporter Michelsberg ( sweet white) approx $11.00 pretty widely available at any wine selling grocery store. German.
4.Mirassou Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc (dry white) $9.99 pear, light, no twang! Purchased at my local grocery store. One of my ‘What I’m Drinking Friday’ picks!
5.Conundrum (white) around $20 (secretive blend- hence the conundrum).
6.Yellowtail Chardonnay (semi dry white) $7.99- This is a friend recommendation. I’ll be honest and admit that I haven’t drank a Chardonnay since my honeymoon 5 years ago.
7.Chateau Ste Michelle Reisling (sweet white)- $7.99 Another mom friend rec. Sweet- readily availible.
8.Yellowtail Shiraz- good beginner (red) $7.99- I like this shiraz. A shiraz is typically a blend, semi dry red. Very easy to drink.
9.Kim Crawford Sauvingnon Blanc (dry white) $13.00- I haven’t had this sauvingnon blanc yet- but I have seen some of my other friends talk about it in Facebook! I am betting it’s an easy to drink, easy access wine.
10. Brancott Vinyards Pino Grigio (sweet white) $8.99 You may need to find Brancott at a wine shop (not a fancy one- my Total Wine carries it). But it is a great white- with the pear and other aromas. They also make my absolute favorite Sauvingnon Blanc too.
Above all: DON’T be intimidated. Someone once told me that it doesn’t matter what wine you’re drinking as long as YOU LIKE IT. It’s only stupid to drink it if you hate it. Life is short- enjoy your wine…cheers! ** Special thanks to: Michelle, Lynnae, Cara, Neeloo, Shannon, Angie and Alicia for the suggestions.
Do you have a favorite wine? Do share! Please include the ballpark price, name, and where you can find it!
Blurb About Farrah:
She thought her days as a high school English teacher were tough! Farrah is a sahm trying to keep her sanity with a toddler and 1 year old twin boys. They live in Greenville, SC with two labs in the hot, hot summers and gorgeous winters. She loves sharing this ‘journey of imperfect parenting’ with other moms- because we’re all doing the best we can for love of our children and sometimes it just doesn’t turn out how we thought it would. When she’s not washing diapers or acting as a human jungle gym, she enjoy tending to her blog The Three Under, doing reviews and giveaways at Outnumbered 3 to 1, and writing for Mommy Living The Life Of Riley!