21 Reds Under $21
|Quattro Mani Montepulciano d'Abruzzo 2008, $11.99, Italian Wine Merchants
Lots of fruit, low acidity, good with food.
Code Noir Merlot Rattlesnake Hills from Washington state, from a former French Laundry/Per Se sommelier. A Merlot that should help rehabilitate the unjustly maligned varietal. $16.99, California Wine Merchants
Paul Jaboulet Aîné Côtes du Rhône Parallèle 45 2007, $11.99, Chelsea Wine Vault
Virtually anything Jaboulet is worth your while; one of their simpler offerings yet it never disappoints. Fruit, pepper, food-friendly.
Chateau Panchille 2006, $16, Moore Brothers
Bordeaux – decent, drinkable Bordeaux at an affordable price – doesn't have to be a thing of the past, thanks to small vineyards such as Panchille.
Marietta Old Vines Red "50" $10.99, Astor Wines
A jammy Zin blend (and Parker favorite) and – woo-hoo – a reasonable 13.5% alcohol level instead of the insane 15% and higher in some Zins.
Chateau d'Oupia 2007, $11.99, Chamber Street Wines
A Minervois that really delivers rich, berry flavors. Parker gives it a 90.
Jean et Gilles Lafouge Auxey-Duresses Premier Cru La Chapelle 2006, $15.99, Garnet
An Auxey-Duresses with all the cherry you want, without the extortionate price tag.
Ruca Malen 2007, $11, Bottlerocket
From Yaquén, an up-and-coming Argentinean winery, a Malbec-Cab Sauv blend. As usual with the Malbec grape, if you can give it some time to age, it will repay your patience.
Slipstream Shiraz Grenache 2005, $19.99, K & D Wines
An all-star team of winemakers have collaborated to produce this blend that's earned raves from all quarters.
Palin Carmenere 2008, $12.99, Appellation
This is a Palin that's not hard to swallow. It's all dark berries and good with winter foods.
Ceci Castel del Monte 2007, $10.99, 67 Wine
An eighth-generation winemaker, a switch two decades ago to organic farming, and the Aglianico grape are the winning formula here. The tannins will take a back seat with a little time.
Hanging Vine, Parcel 3 Cabernet Sauvignon 2008, $11.99, Le Dû Wines
A California Cab that's not overwrought and overpriced? It can be done.
Primitivo Quiles Cono 4 2008, $12.99, Crush
This Mourvedre (and Monastrell) blend is a rich brew of fruit and pepper from the esteemed Quiles family.
Domaine Monpertuis Vignoble de la Ramiere 2006, $13.75, The Greene Grape
Here's a grape we bet you haven't heard of: counoise. Taste this Rhone varietal, generally blended with Syrah and Mourvedre, strut its stuff solo.
Georg Albrecht Schneider Dornfelder 2007, $12, Smith & Vine
Dornfelder is another huh? grape – one that leans blackberry. You don't think of Germany and reds in the same sentence, but this could change that.
Domaine Charvin 2007, $12.99, Union Square Wines
A deliciously juicy blend of Grenache and Merlot that is terrific with food or without.
Tishbi Estates Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, $14.49, Gotham Wines
A Kosher Cab from Israel with plenty of forward fruit.
Casa Lapostolle Cabernet Sauvignon 2006, $15, Park Avenue Liquor Shop
This Chilean/French collaboration has produced the extraordinary Clos Apalta (around $80 a pop) as well as this more modest offering, that has good structure and a long finish.
Valdarno Chianti 2007, $12.99, PJ Wine
This is what you want for a pasta dinner when it's cold outside, the windows are steamed, and you'd like to cozy up to a red. Dried cherries predominate; a genuine bargain.
Dona Ermelinda Palmela 2007, $9.99, Bacchus
The inky hue is at odds with the raspberries and cherries that are this wine's calling card. Portugal comes through with this one.
Nepenthe Tryst, 2003, $15.99, New York Wine Exchange
From Down Under, this Cabernet Sauvignon, Zin, Tempranillo blend (not the usual Aussie thing) may be the most interesting wine on the list, if not the most elegant. Will stand up to most any food you throw at it.
skint - adj. british slang (1930-35)
lacking funds, broke, bust, stone-broke, impecunious
Around town this weekend, courtesy of the skint: a daily listing of free and cheap things to buy, see, do and eat in New York.
winedanddined lists 30 new brunch, prix-fixe, wine and byo deals (6 oysters + muscadet or beer for $12, bottomless mimosas and bloody mary's, more)
black rock coalition performs inspirational songs from curtis mayfield's catalog, part of bam's annual tribute to martin luther king, jr. [fri-sat 9pm, free]
slow-cookin' smackdown! amateur and pro chefs compete in the 2nd annual cassoulet cook off @ jimmy's no. 43 [sat 1-5pm, $20]
the knickerbocker chamber orchestra performs prokofiev's 'peter and the wolf' with narration by neil gaiman ('sandman'), plus 'and bold to fall withal – henry hudson in the new world' with broadway's jason danieley, more [sat 7pm, free]
wnyc's brian lehrer and celeste headlee moderate a discussion on the impact of martin luther king, jr.'s life and legacy @ the brooklyn museum [sun 3-5pm, free (rsvp)]