The Best White Wine Blends For Any Budget

If there's one thing I've learned in all my years in the wine business, it's that the wine world has always loved a great red blend, whether in the celebrated regions of Bordeaux or in the hearty red blends from regions like California and Washington State. But I've also learned that white blends deserve their moment in the spotlight, too.

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Preferring wine blends over varietal types of white wines makes sense. Different grape varieties carry different characteristics, whether it's their ability to ripen in cooler temperatures or withstand warmer ones, their specific aromatic profile, or their relative acidity levels. When a single grape variety is standing on its own, all aspects that make a great wine need to be there from the get-go. However, in periods of problematic weather events, low-yield harvests, uneven ripening, or just plain finicky grapes, it helps a winemaker to have several levers to pull to create an ideal wine. Where one grape is overly acidic, another might bring softness. Where another is aromatic but lacking structure, another might bring a much-needed burst of freshness. The kaleidoscope of flavors and textures in white wine grapes is vast, which makes the possibilities for exciting white wine blends endless.

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In this round-up, we explore some truly delicious white wine blends for all budgets — some offbeat and unique, and some made from classic wine grape partners in crime. The result is a lip-smacking wine shopping list to stock your cellar and fridge with this season and beyond.

Manincor La Contessa

This is one of my favorite wines from one of my all-time favorite producers, from one of my all-time favorite wine regions. I first got to know Manincor, the organic, biodynamic producer from the northern Italian region of Alto Adige, when I worked in New York City as a sales rep for an Italian importer and distributor. Manincor was one of the brands we represented, so I had firsthand access to their portfolio, which included the stunning La Contessa white blend.

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Sipping this wine is like biting into a perfectly ripe, juicy peach while sitting in a country garden at peak afternoon warmth, when the aromas of the herbs and flowers that surround you are their most fragrant. A blend of 55% pinot blanc, 28% chardonnay, and 17% sauvignon blanc, this luscious white has everything — aromatics, mouth-watering acidity, structure, and complexity — and makes for a perfect special occasion wine or everyday selection. Available at many national retailers and online shops for around $30 a bottle. This wine can stand up to heartier cuisines like salty cheese and charcuterie or a classic, slightly spicy cioppino

Tablas Creek Vineyard Patlin de Tablas Blanc

If anyone knows about delicious California-style Rhône blends, it's the folks at Tablas Creek, who pioneered this movement in California's Paso Robles wine region in the late 1980s. Founded by the Perrin family of Château de Beaucastel in the Châteauneuf-du-Pape appellation in France, and Vineyard Brands founder Robert Haas who recognized the potential to grow grapes and make wine in the Central Coast region of California, the winery is celebrated for its beautifully crafted blends and varietal wines based primarily on the grapes of the Rhône Valley, like grenache, syrah, roussanne, cinsaut, bourboulenc, clairette, and others.

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"Patelin" is French slang for "neighborhood," which represents the spirit of this line of Tablas Creek wines, sourced from eight to 12 vineyards and using native yeasts and thoughtful blending. Available online for $28, the Tablas Creek Patelin de Tablas Blanc is a blend of grenache blanc, viognier, roussanne, marsanne, and clairette blanche, with a touch of the Italian grape vermentino, aged only in stainless steel. It's got tons of juicy stone fruit and floral notes, along with bright acidity and a clean, mineral-driven finish. Like its red counterpart, this wine is also available by the 3-liter box, sure to please a crowd.

Tank Garage Winery Hot Fuss

If I could greet every visitor to my house with a cool glass of this wine, I would. It's easily one of my favorite white wine blends of all time, from quite possibly the hippest, most envelope-pushing winey out there.

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Tank Garage Winery, based in the Calistoga appellation of California's Napa Valley, will tell you that the vision that fuels their business is "to make wines that add to the collective conversation. Wines with soul and purpose." One look at the winery's portfolio of exciting blends with eye-popping labels, not to mention their cool-kid vibe and ultra-hip merch (like everyone's favorite gold corkscrew), will have you packing your bags and heading to their converted garage winery for some delicious sips and a rollicking good time. Can't travel? Hop online and, for $35 a pop, snag a bottle or three of the Hot Fuss white blend, a fun concoction of 45% grüner veltliner, 20% gewürztraminer, 13% greco, 12% riesling, and 10% chardonnay, all sourced from top appellations throughout California. The wine is pure sunshine in a bottle and the ultimate porch pounder at only 12.5% ABV.

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Elena Walch Beyond the Clouds

This is another top wine from the region of Alto Adige in Northern Italy. Founded by former architect Elena Walch, who married into a prominent Italian wine family in the region, the winery is known for world-class wines produced with modern techniques that also respect the environment through a deep commitment to sustainability. The Elena Walch winery is now run by daughters Julia and Karoline, representing the fifth generation of the winemaking family.

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History meets innovation in Beyond the Clouds, a premium proprietary white wine blend based primarily on chardonnay. Elena Walch sources the absolute best grapes for this Grande Cuvée, each variety of which is fermented together in new French oak barrels, and aged for a further 10 months. Year after year, this wine has scored 90 points and higher from just about every wine critic, and is a stunning example of a premium wine from the Alto Adige region — or any region, for that matter. It's lush and full, with ripe tropical and stone fruit, juicy pear, and honeysuckle, with notes of toasted nuts and herbal tea. It has mouth-watering acidity for days, which provides an elegant lift to the voluptuous palate. Generally priced online between $75-$80, this is a centerpiece wine worthy of your best wine friends ... that is, if you even want to share it.

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Pine Ridge Vineyards Chenin Blanc-Viognier

Few white wine blends out there are as crowd-pleasing as the Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc-Viognier. Any time I purchase wine for a party or weekend getaway with family and friends, this is one of my go-to selections. Winemaker Colleen FitzGerald is at the helm of this blend, sourcing grapes from Clarksburg, California in the Sacramento River Delta. Originally produced as an experimental wine back in 1995, the Chenin Blanc-Viognier is now one of the most recognized and popular wines in Pine Ridge's portfolio.

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While chenin blanc and viognier both hail from different parts of France, these grapes aren't typically blended together. But Pine Ridge's decision to do so nearly 20 years ago was a good one. Chenin blanc's high acidity and prominent citrus notes add a welcome brightness to viognier's signature floral aromatics and more viscous body, creating a match made in heaven when it comes to balance in wine. In even better news, the winery has recently introduced this wine in a new lightweight bottle that clocks in at 20% lighter than the average glass bottle, allowing the winery to shrink its carbon footprint as part of its objective of reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050. This tasty selection is only $16 a bottle and available at many retailers nationwide, as well as online.

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La Vielle Ferme Blanc

If you're looking for a total bargain when it comes to great white wine blends, La Vielle Ferme needs to be on your list. Every summer, my family and I travel to a lake house my parents have just north of Toronto, Canada. We spend long days on the dock, watching boats go by and, of course, sipping easy glasses of chilled white wine. What do we love to fill those glasses with? This easy-drinking gem of a wine, widely available throughout the United States as well as, it turns out, Canada.

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Priced around $10 a bottle, La Vielle Ferme Blanc is produced by that same Perrin family of Tablas Creek Vineyards in Paso Robles and made with some of those same classic Rhône Valley grapes — bourboulenc, grenache blanc, and Italian workhorse grapes ugni blanc and vermentino. It's a tasty, crushable white that goes with everything or nothing, best sipped with friends while taking in life and making shared memories. Whip up a basic yet classic roast chicken, pour a few tumblers' worth, and settle in for the perfect evening. La Vielle Ferme also comes in a 3-liter box, as well as a red, rosé, and sparkling that are all equally quaffable.

Esporão Reserva White

I sang the praises of the Esporão Reserva red blend in this round-up of great red blends under $30, and I feel equally as excited about that wine's white wine counterpart. Esporão is the largest wine producer in the Altenjo region of Portugal, and the most widely distributed in the United States. The brand is also a leader in sustainable agriculture and certified organic grape-growing, with all 1,317 acres of their estate certified organic as of 2019, with bats, birds, and flocks of sheep rather than chemical herbicides and pesticides contributing to vineyard health.

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The Esporão Reserva white blend is made from local Portuguese grape varieties antão vaz, arinto, and roupeiro, 75% of which are fermented in stainless steel tanks, with the remaining 25% in American and French oak barrels. The wine then ages for six months in stainless steel and oak barrels, spending time on its lees — those dead yeast cells that may sound icky, but contribute incredible texture and flavor to a wine. This is a surprisingly full-bodied wine and yet it manages to remain light on its feet thanks to lovely fruit and floral notes and a backbone of acidity. Consistently rated in the 90s by critics, at around $20 a bottle online, this wine represents fantastic quality for the price.

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Avaline White

Celebrity-backed wine and spirits may be a dime a dozen, but this one is worth your attention. Actress Cameron Diaz and entrepreneur Katherine Power launched Avaline in 2020 with the goal of creating a line of wines made using organic grapes and promising transparency at every step, from grower to producer to ingredients and nutritional labeling on each bottle. The full portfolio of wines includes varietal wines like cabernet sauvignon, chardonnay, pinot noir, and sauvignon blanc, as well as several sparkling selections, a red blend, and this tasty white blend.

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The Avaline White is made from a selection of organically-grown Spanish grapes — specifically 40% xarel-lo, 30% parellada, 20% white grenache, and 10% macabeo — in a dry, crisp, fresh style. Produced as part of the Don Miguel Icons project of Familia Torres, a longstanding family of winemakers in Spain's Penedès region, this is a delightful summer white with fresh peach, apple, and citrus notes, and a mouth-watering finish. It's also got a screwcap for easy picnic portability. Available online and at many major wine retailers at $24 a bottle.

Pasqua Hey French! You Could Have Made This But You Didn't

Wine Enthusiast Magazine named Pasqua Vigneti e Cantine "Innovator of the Year" in 2023 for good reason. Not only is the Hey French! You Could Have Made This But You Didn't a blend of different grapes, but it's also a blend of different vintages, a technique generally reserved for non-vintage sparkling wines. In fact, the wine's offbeat name is a tongue-in-cheek reference to the fact that French vignerons created the concept of blending multiple vintages but never used the process for still wines. 

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Garganega — a grape from the northeastern Italian region of Veneto that is the predominant wine grape in Soave — forms the basis of this fascinating wine. Small portions of pinot blanc and sauvignon blanc taken from high-elevation, volcanic spots in Monte Calvarina make up the rest. The current release is a mix of the 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 harvests. Pasqua's modern take on the wine doesn't stop there: The bottle's eye-catching label was created by CB Hoyo, an up-and-coming Cuban artist who uses his craft to challenge conventional notions of art.

Despite its whimsical vibe, this is a serious wine with serious flavor and aging potential. It's complex and aromatic but superbly structured with excellent balance. Fruit meets floral aromas that lead to a beguiling herbal note and the unmistakable minerality that comes from the influence of volcanic soil. Available online for around $50, this is a wine to wow people with.

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The Walls Lip Stinger

Although The Walls winery gets its name from the Washington State Penitentiary, known locally as "The Walls" and one of Walla Walla Washington's most recognized landmarks, the vision behind the winery is one of hope and inspiration. The team notes on the website that we as individuals put up walls in our own lives, whether to protect our hearts, defend our values, or set boundaries, but that wine somehow manages to topple these walls and has the unique power to bring us together. It was this homage to wine that made me fall in love with this winery, not to mention its location in a really exciting region for wine — the Pacific Northwest.

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Lip Stinger is a southern Rhône-inspired blend of 50% grenache blanc, 25% viognier, 17% roussanne, 4% marsanne, and 2% each of picpoul and clairette blanche, sourced from Yakima Valley and Walla Walla Valley. It's quite aromatic with a silky texture lifted by bright acidity and prominent honey-dipped yet tart fruit. At $32 a bottle, this is a delicious summer sipper and perfect for a wide range of warm and cool weather cuisine.

Susana Balbo Signature Brioso White Blend

Susana Balbo is a force of nature. She was Argentina's first female enologist and is widely regarded as one of South America's most iconic figures in wine. She's also dubbed the "Queen of Torrontés," responsible for establishing this obscure but compelling grape as the star of Argentine white wine. I had the distinct pleasure of meeting Susana while staying at the dreamy SB Winemaker's House Spa & Suites, the first hotel in a group of lodging she and her daughter, Ana Lovaglio Balbo, are creating in Mendoza and can confirm that she's a visionary as a human being and as a winemaker.

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In my hotel room was a bottle of the Susana Balbo Signature Brioso White Blend, and I — as wine travelers are inclined to do — dipped into the offering while lounging on the patio of my zen-like suite. Up until this point, I counted torrontés on the list of grapes I didn't particularly like, and this wine changed my view entirely.

Blended with near-thirds of sémillon and sauvignon blanc, this is a beautifully perfumed white blend from Argentina's Uco Valley, filled with exotic fruit, jasmine, citrus rind, and a whiff of wet stone. I loved it so much in Argentina that I purchased some for consumption in California and still count it among my favorite home sips. I've seen it at various online retailers for between $26 and $33 a bottle, and it's well worth every penny.

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