Maison Moutard-Diligent Bourgogne Rouge ($19.99): The Moutard-Diligent family has been making wine in the village of Buxeuil since the 17th century. Though this northern outpost of Burgundy is perhaps known more for its white wines, juicy Pinot Noir flourishes just ten miles north-east of Chablis. Ripe red fruit belies the seriousness of this wine in terms of structure and elegance.
Maison Moutard-Diligent Bourgogne Blanc ($18.99): One thing this wine shares in common with its more expensive cousins from the region is a beautiful balance between restraint and richness. Perfectly balanced fruit and minerality are telltales of this wine’s Northern Burgundian elegance, but it has a substance and style all its own.
Chateau de Brague Bordeaux Superieur ($16.99): This budget Bordeaux shines in its category and punches above its weight class. Vibrant, right bank Merlot and Cabernet Franc meld to create a wine that is ready to drink and enjoy immediately yet retains some gravitas and terroir from its birthplace. Decanting helps bring out complex aromas of ripe red fruit and smooths out the mild tannins.
Chateau Cadenette Costieres-de-Nimes ($12.99): This fantastic all-season red works as well with an outdoor barbecue as it does with a pot-au-feu or braised short ribs in cooler times. Smoky and structured but posessing rich, ripe red fruit, this wine exceeds both expectations as well as its price tag.