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I am by no means, in anybody’s mind, a wine connoisseur. In fact I know very little about wine, besides the fact that I like to drink it – red, white or rose, I love it. But, there are a couple of bottles that I do particularly enjoy. As a 24-year-old, I don’t have the money or interest in buying expensive bottles of wine, so all of the bottles I discuss will be under $20, and normally under $15. My goal is to find the best cheap wine!

My friend Chelsea showed me this bottle of Montepulciano D’Abruzzo by Villa Cerrina at Trader Joe’s for $5. It is the best $5 bottle of red wine I’ve found so far. It is medium bodied, tart wine with “good tannins” – so says the Internet. If I were to describe it I would say it has a bit of berry background to it, and is medium bodied. Pairs well with pastas, chili, and a night in chatting with friends.

Montepulciano D'Abruzzo

Trader Joe’s is definitely one of my favorite wine shops to get cheap wine. I used to do Two-Buck Chuck in college, I now know that it is the worst wine. Straight up, it’s disgusting. But when you are a broke college student looking to get a little tipsy, two-buck chuck does the job just fine. We actually used to buy it by the case; that is pretty gross to think about now.

I am going to be browsing the aisles of a few wine shops to try to find some good cheap wines. I am also interested in looking at different areas – parts of New York, Chile, Argentina, South Africa, etc. I’m setting out to learn a bit about wine, through my own blog. My friend wants to go to the finger lakes for wine tasting for her birthday, so I am going to be on the hunt for some good wineries up there.

Vineyard: Villa Cerrina

Wine: Montepulciano D’Abruzzo

Tasting Notes: Root vegetables, light tannins, smooth finish.

Pairing: Pairs well with lamb, chili (vegetarian or meat), wintry nights at home with friends, and chocolate. It is a good table wine.

Fun Fact: Montepulciano grapes are grown in the Abruzzo region of Italy, which runs from the Apennines to the Adriatic Coast.