If you’ll be stopping by your favorite store to pick up some wine for the weekend, here are some quick picks to help you increase the odds of finding good quality at a good price. Read on for picks from Trader Joe’s, Costco and Safeway.

A quick side note. I’ve mentioned several times in the past how much I enjoy Chateau Ste. Michelle Rieslings. As a result I’m increasing the score of their wine from 86 to 89 points which seems more in-line with the quality this wine delivers at a phenomenal price. This is based on months of tastings, especially paired with Loni’s spicy chicken curry. Note that I almost solely drink these Rieslings with spicy food, and find them a tad too sweet alone.

Trader Joe’s

  1. 2007 Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling (89 pts, $5.99) – crisp, a tad sweet, ideal for spicy foods
  2. 2005/2006 Bogle Petite Syrah (87 pts, $9.99) – smooth fruit, with nice finish
  3. 2006 Clos du Bois Sonoma Reserve Chardonnay 2006 (87 pts, $13.49) – classic Chard, creamy, nice spring pick


  1. 2006 Liberty School Cabernet Sauvignon (87 pts, $15) – not classic bold, more smooth, relaxed Cab
  2. 2007 Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc (87 pts, $11.99) – a favorite Sauvignon Blanc, herbaceous, zingy
  3. 2005 Merryvale Starmont Cabernet Sauvignon (89 pts, $17.99) – big Cab at not so big price


  1. 2006 Benziger Chardonnay, (88 pts, $8.08) – traditional Chard
  2. 2006 Kenwood Merlot, (86 pts, $8.08) – enjoyable, price is great
  3. 2006 Kunde Cabernet Sauvignon, (87 pts, $11.68) – premium brand, Napa style, low price