With all the choices available, it’s not always easy to determine which wine might be just right for your holiday festivities. Whether you’re pairing wine to a selection of amazing holiday cheeses or to a table laden with a variety of flavors for the big meal, we’re here to help! First off, know that the best rule to follow is to buy and drink wines that you like. Despite what you may have heard, wine is all about your own personal taste. Our second bit of advice: You don’t have to spend a lot of money to enjoy really delicious wines. We’ve searched the world to find affordable, easy-going wines and we’ve selected our favorites for our Top Ten holiday wines – all under $15. In our previous blog, we highlighted some sensational white wine pairings. Now, we’re turning our palates to a delicious selection of red wines that are sure to bring you lots of holiday cheer. And to really make it easy for you to enjoy these top-notch wines at easy-to-swallow prices, we’re sharing our favorite cheeses and recipes to match. BUBO OLD VINE ZINFANDEL As we all know, the holidays aren’t just about gift-giving and cookie-making. There’s football! And we’ve got just the right wine to not only accompany your favorite foods but also to cheer your team to victory. This spicy and deep zinfandel has plum and gentle oak highlights and is a tasty match for chili, pizza, burgers or Fourme D’Ambert cheese, a smooth mild blue just right for the season. Try this one with our soul-satisfying Vegetarian Chipotle Chili. ESTANCIA PINOT NOIR You’ll love this rich, supple handcrafted wine for its pure pleasure…and its bang for your buck. The hint of dark berries is so perfect for big holiday meals that even the turkey will ask for a glass. This pinot noir is an exquisite match for Cypress Grove Truffle Tremor, a goat’s milk cheese made with the finest truffles with a silky texture, deep flavor and creamy finish. We recommend pairing this pinot with Cranberry and Apple-Stuffed Roasted Pork. DIEVOLE DIEVOLINO SANGIOVESE DI TOSCANA When Italian favorites like osso bucco and ragù are on the menu, you’ve got the makings of an Italian love affair. True to its Tuscan roots, it’s a lively, ruby red with a hint of juniper, ideal for Robusto, a sharp, Gouda-style cheese with distinct nuttiness. For an entrée, it doesn’t get any better than Spaghetti Bolognese and this fine sangiovese. PASO A PASO TEMPRANILLO Made with organically grown grapes, this deep, intensely floral tempranillo has huge flavor and works beautifully with Roasted Beef Tenderloin, paella and spicy chorizo. And it plays well with another holiday treasure, Le Gruyère, an exquisite, traditionally produced Swiss cheese with a complex nuttiness. BODEGAS CASTAÑO HÉCULA MONASTRELL It’s almost unbelievable that this bold, elegant red wine, made from Spain’s Monastrell grape, is available for less than $15. Perfect for winter’s best comfort foods–like beef stew, grilled cheese sandwiches or Classic Butternut Squash Soup. The pleasant tannins are quite friendly with the saltiness of Manchego cheese. VALLEY OF THE MOON SYRAH Drink this soft, silky California red with smoky pulled pork, roasted root vegetables or Rogue Anniversary Blue cheese, a sweet and buttery Oregon blue. The dark and peppery notes make a seductive pairing with Roasted Ham with Maple and Orange Marmalade Glaze. We hope you enjoy these tips for perfect pairings and here’s wishing you a harmonious holiday with lots of cheer(s)!