How to Pick a Good Wine for Under $15

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Wine bottles

This week, Sasha shares 5 strategies for choosing an excellent bottle of wine that won't break the bank. Tune in every day for a new tip!


If I had a nickel for every time someone asked me what my favorite under-$15 bottle is, well, I’d be able to buy a lot of very expensive wine. The truth is, I can’t settle on just one. There’s so much good wine out there, who could blame me for being fickle? So instead of naming names, I’ll share my general strategies for finding delicious wines at modest prices.

2. Head to the back of the store first. The heavily promoted displays of inexpensive wines near the door rarely offer much interest. The real estate right after the register is usually dedicated to the most recognizable regions and varieties, and, just as with fashion, you pay for big, familiar names. Bypass the Napa Cabernet Sauvignon and the Burgundy. You may find bottles here for under $15, but you’ll get more bang-for-your-buck elsewhere. If it’s my first time in a store, I’ll ask where the Portuguese wines are. They’re likely to be hidden away in some quiet corner, right in the heart of the “obscure wines that no one talks about but can often be delicious” district. Plus customers who ask about Portuguese wines are so few and far between, you’ll be sure to catch the attention of the staff.

Sasha Smith




Sasha Smith writes about wine and food on her website, spinthebottleny. In her spare time, she is the Executive Director of a New York based media company.