Eric Asimov’s Favorite Winter Wines for $20

Winter is in full effect and a night in with the right glass of wine is certainly a perfect way to get through these below zero wind chills. That’s where Eric Asimov’s list of favorite winter wines for $20 comes in handy. Read the full article here or browse our tasting notes below.

Riesling, Eva Fricke – 2011  
Lovely and lush, with vibrating apricot and peach acidity, this Riesling from Eva Fricke contains two-thirds estate fruit from Kiedrich and Lorch vineyards; the rest was bought from her former employer, Leitz. The density of orchard fruit just delights and wins the day, especially next to grilled sausages, salads, and tuna tartare.

“Ravan,” Kabaj – 2010  
Ravan is a regional name for Tocai Friulano, which must now be know as Sauvignon Vert in Europe. Naturally-grown grapes are hand-harvested, fermented and matured in used oak 12 months. A true sense of the varietal is present with herbal notes and a proper citrus tang. Ideal for light spring greens, asparagus and poached eggs, fava beans and pasta.

Dolcetto d’Alba “Vignavillej”, Brovia – 2011  
Violet-ruby in the glass, with intense arromas of pulpy cherry flesh, this wine has accompanying flavors of blackberries, almonds, and cloves that mingle well with sturdy tannins and the acidity expected of any self-respecting Italian red. Brovia does not exploit his Dolcetto to make additional cash as his Barolos age sit in barrel before release; the family has always considered Dolcetto an early-drinking wine worthy of attention and take care with its elevage. Briefly decant to release its potential and pair with sausages blended with Italian herbal seasonings, white pizza with truffle oil, or a mushroom sauté.

Leo Steen Chenin Blanc – 2012 
Orchard fruits layered with honey-cream, zippy acid and juicy peach aromas come together in this Lucius white from the Dry Creek Valley. Hints of white jasmine tea and delicate floral notes complete the package and adds that special extra layer of complexity. A versatile white for baked poultry, spicy Asian cuisines and sushi.

Vespaiolo “Vignasilan,” Contra Soarda – 2010  
“Vignasilan”is the vineyard cru name for this rustic white from Breganze DOC, an obscure area located in the volcanic soils of Italy’s Pre-Alp foothills. This Vespaiolo is piercing with mineraled aromatics of chiseled granite. The acidulous texture is dense and displays cool peach / apricot flavors. Contra’ Soarda, which means “hamlet on the slope” grows as many vines as olive trees with utmost respect for the environment.

Saumur-Champigny “La Grande Vignolle”, Filliatreau – 2009  (Out of Stock)
A fantastic bottle of wine from Filliatreau. Chisled red fruit on the palate – freshly picked cherries and red currants. Juicy, medium-bodied and unbelievably focused on the palate. Unfiltered.

Mulderbosch Faithful Hound, Stellenbosch – 2010  
The Faithful Hound will always come through for you. This is a Bordeaux-style blend that sneaks in a few notes of licorice among the juicy red berry flavors. Full-bodied and rich, there’s a presence of spice as well, with medium tannins on the finish.