July 18, 2019 | 76° F

Red, white, rosé: great wines for $25 or less

A glass of wine can elevate any evening, but price-wise, it isn’t always practical. A bottle of fairly fine wine can set you back as much as it would cost to buy a college textbook, after all. And as students on student budgets, we have to recognize that popping Perrier-Jouët might only be acceptable at celebrations.

Your life doesn’t have to be a sad tale of sickly sweet $10 bottles, though. You can buy a beautiful sommelier-approved wine: red, white, rosé or sparkling, for $25 or less. So save your money for a savory cheese pairing, or just save your money.

So, if you like red wine, you’ll love a good, spicy pinot noir. To fulfill your urge for just $17, try the 2015 Ritual Pinot Noir. The Chilean wine goes great with a hearty dinner.

For $14, Tommasi Rafael Valpolicella Classico Superiore is lighter than a standard red, and it’s delicious in its own way.

The 2014 Ravines Wine Cellars Dry Riesling is $18, bright and delicious. It has a standard bit of sweetness, too.

Alamos Torrontés 2016 is fruity and bright, straight from Argentinean vineyards. At $13, it’s an excellent value.

Alamos 2016 Torrontés
While it’s usually something you drink in warm weather, there’s nothing stopping you from enjoying pale and pretty rosé in the wintertime. Whether you drink it for the taste or aesthetic, it’s a favorite.

At $23, 2015 Edmunds St. John Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir Rosé falls right under the price point, and, boy, is it worth it. This is a favorite for its bright, light-bodied presence.

Il Poggione Brancato Rosato 2016 is great Italian rosé priced at $19. It’s a captivating, summery and fruity drink.

A final choice is Gérard Bertrand Cote des Roses Rosé 2016. If the bottle is gorgeous enough to pull you in, the taste and cost are enough to make you stay. It’s crisp and works well with seafood, and at only $18 it’s hard to resist.

If champagne is your game, you know that by nature, good sparkling wine often costs more than $25, think Veuve Clicquot and Moet & Chandon.

But when life calls for cheap bubbles at a birthday or brunch, you can save your wallet and snatch a good-tasting bottle of Korbel champagne for under $15. It is so light and crisp, plus it’s one of the easiest things to find in a liquor store. Try Korbel Brut Rosé for a tasty, sweet drink.

For a nice Italian prosecco, try Cantine Umberto Bortolotti Prosecco. It’s clean, floral and a great choice.

Do you need another exceptional option? Freixenet Cordon Negro Brut is a fresh, fruity cava, which refers to a sparkling wine from Spain, and can pair perfectly with your favorite hors d'oeuvres. 

You don't need to drop big bucks on a bottle to feel like a wine connoisseur, and if you're on a budget, you also don't have to settle for Barefoot or boxed wine. Since no one should drink alone, consider splitting the cost of one of our top picks with a friend or your date next time the occasion calls for wine. 

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