sleepy wrote:but a good sangiovese is nice as well.
My wife and I are big sangiovese fans as well. If you haven't, you should try tempranillo sometime, too. It's a Spanish wine that reminds me of sangiovese. I don't remember the exact name, but I know "The Dragon" was part of the name of the one we tried.
A couple of weeks ago we tried Three Thieves pino noir not knowing it came in a litre jug. It was at a locally owned restaurant and the owner served us the wine and then brough us all sickers that read "I 'heart' jugs" and had the wine's logo in the heart. We liked it a lot, both the stickers and the wine.
I'll drink about anything as far as wine is concerned. My father in law has taken up wine making so we drink what he makes quite a bit. He has several batches going at any one time, each batch makes 30 bottles and he's not much of a wine drinker. He makes a killer Reisling.
We prefer buying wine from wineries that we visit and taste at. It seems more fun that way and you get to reminise about the mini vacation you took. There are a surprising number of wineries in the midwest. When we buy wines at regular stores, we stick to the sub $15 wines and my wife generally chooses by label. I seem to prefer New Zeland, Chilean and Italian wines, but I don't actively seek them out.
There's a blend called "Menage Tois" (sp?) that comes in both red and white that we like a lot. They're not fancy and complex, but they are easy to drink and goes with lots of different foods. Yellow Tail is always a safe bet, and inexpensive. There's a brand called Wild Horse that makes a good pinot noir. Gabbiano Chiani is one of our favorites, too. We have friends that swear by Dynamite, but it's on the "pricier" ($20/bottle) side. Anyone in Portland, OR should check out the Edgefield wines. We liked them and the McMenamins (sp?) places are fun to visit. They have good restaurants, too.