16 Best Wines At Trader Joe's Under $10 In 2023, Ranked

Trader Joe's has long been a staple for shoppers trying to track down decent wine at a budget price point. But, even if you know roughly where Trader Joe's keeps its popular wines, every store differs slightly due to size and personal style, and scratching the surface of the bottle options can be as daunting as untangling the finale of a Christoper Nolan movie. Known widely for its two buck Chuck (otherwise known as the Charles Shaw collection, which is now, actually, "three buck chuck,") the average price of a bottle of vino sold at Trader Joe's lurks around the $15 mark. Still, the store routinely contains bottles ranging from the shockingly low $4 price tag up to the low thirties.

Capping our budget at $10 a bottle, we uncorked, sniffed, and sipped our way into finding 10 options dependably available on Trader Joe's shelves, all in the same price range as a house glass pours at a local restaurant. To search its shelves, we spread our gaze amongst the categories (sparkling, stilled, red, white) and region (domestic, French, Italian, etc.) for a wide sample size to pair with any season, occasion, and food the average Trader Joe shopper might be expected encounter while pursuing the selection.

16. Tenebres, G.S.M, 2020

Originating from France's Cotes du Rhone region, a G.S.M. (grenache, syrah, mourvèdre) can now be found in wineries worldwide. The grape breakdown of Tenebres' (2020) relies on almost an even distribution of each grape at 34% grenache, 33% syrah, and 33% mourvèdre, and shows as the heaviest-bodied red we're endorsing on this under $10 list (it retails for $5.99).

From France, though not in the Cotes du Rhone region, Tenebres produces slightly south of the Rhone, in the Languedoc — a region known for their roses and workhorse reds.

Weighty on the nose and smacking on dark cherries, Tenebres is dry, austere, and a wine that asks for food. On its own (and without time to breathe), the tannins dry up the tongue and cause an astringent sensation, but once kissed with a little spice, stewed tomato, or herbed stew, the wine takes a step back and slides off the tongue with ease. Not for the new-school wine fanatic to religiously devote themselves to the rules of drinking natural wine, Tenebres leans more toward the taste of classical wine enthusiasts who want a little heft and a lot of body to their reds.

15. Tuatea, Sauvignon Blanc, 2022

Nothing is more thirst-quenching on a hot day than an aromatic, citrus-forward, chilled glass of white wine, especially for a bargain price. Trader Joe's provides. Tuatea sauvignon blanc from New Zealand's Marlborough region is a textbook example of the variety from Kiwi country. The zesty, perfumed wine invites you in with fragrant grapefruit, fresh herbs, and gooseberry aromas. The texture is light and smooth. It has a relatively uncomplicated and incredibly approachable flavor profile similar to its aromas, with a lean note of minerality on the finish. 

The Tuatea is an easy-to-drink wine, ready to be enjoyed on its own or paired with grilled fish, classic roast chicken, or light pasta dishes. Though the wine is not as well-rounded, structured, or concentrated as other sauvignon blanc options crafted worldwide, we don't mind. Its effortless style and bargain price of $6.99 make this a great white wine for any day.

14. Marquis de Colbert Reserva, 2017

We love a wine that offers a unique yet appetizing flavor profile, especially one featuring a relatively unknown grape variety. Marquis de Colbert Reserva achieves this in a 50/50 red blend of tempranillo with bobal from the Utiel-Requena region within Valencia, Spain. Bobal is native to Utiel-Requenca, making up over 50% of the region's grape plantings or over 40,000 acres of vineyards. The grape thrives in the arid region in southeast Spain due to its thick skins and drought resistance. Despite its relatively unknown international fame, it is well-known in Spain as the third most widely planted grape variety after tempranillo and airén. 

Marquis de Colbert Reserva combines the two red types to create a balanced wine with a deep garnet-purple color, fresh acidity, medium to full body, and nicely integrated tannin, giving the wine structure and complexity. The 2017 vintage wine is initially aged 12 months in American oak, bottled, and then left to bottle age until purchased and enjoyed. This additional bottle aging has only rounded out the flavor profile, bringing subtle notes of dried fruit and toasted spice to complement the layers of savory balsamic, star anise, blackberry, dark cherry, and oak. 

Pair the wine with roasted beef or game, like red wine braised lamb or slowly simmered beef stew. With a price of only $5.99 per bottle, Marquis de Colbert Reserva is proof that you don't have to spend a fortune for a wine to be delicious.

13. Honey Moon, Viogner, 2021

One of Trader Joe's most celebrated wines, Honey Moon viognier, is one of the rare bottles that Trader Joe itself hypes with a lengthy background in the stories section of its website (via Trader Joe's). Though viognier remains a lesser-known varietal than grapes such as chardonnay or sauvignon blanc, its growing popularity is reflected by its emerging prominence in California's planting of the B-list grape.

Named after its honey-suckled flavor Honey Moon viognier presents sweeter and fruitier than any other white wine we'd recommend from Trader Joe's. The full-bodied Honey Moon benefits from foods such as a bowl of curry or even turkey chili that craves a little residual sugar to wash away spicy notes.

Like many of Trader Joe's budget offerings, the Honey Moon label is adolescent and a tad embarrassing — a gold crescent moon adorns the twist-top bottle, but beneath its basic seeming surface lurks a wine worth more than its paltry pricepoint. Grown in three AVA's of Central California's wine country, Honey Moon has a perfumed, nearly tropical nose and tastes of ripe, late summer fruits like cantaloupe and apricot. Cloying if not taken with a dynamic meal, Honey Moon's sweetness tends to build on the tongue and taste hotter than its 13% ABV.

12. Cecilia Beretta, Prosecco, non-vintage

Of all the categories of wine available at Trader Joe's for under $10, the sparkling section of the store will be the most stable corner of the store to rely on. Just as in proper Champagne, wines classified as Prosecco must follow certain tenets; the wine must be made from (at least) 85% glera grapes, made in the Charmat method (in steel tanks), and originate from the Valdobbiadene region of Italy.

Though considerably less prized than the ephemeral Champagne, Prosecco has a place in every brunch diner's heart (and mimosa) and also makes great sparkling wine cocktails (as in this Aperol Spritz recipe).

On its own, Cecilia Berretta's wine first makes itself notable by its lively, punchy bubbles. Kind of like a mosh pit on your tongue, the carbonation in the bottle seems to fight for space on the surface of your tongue, resulting in an eye-popping, awakening sensation. Priced at just $9.99, this Prosecco smells sweeter on the nose than it ends up falling on the tongue and tastes of warmed pears and baking spices. It's a stand-by for punches and party cocktails and would sing with white pasta and hints of nutmeg or cinnamon.

11. Trader Joe's Reserve, Whaluke Slope Syrah Lot # 237, 2021

The reserve-tier wines at Trader Joe's are far different from most supermarket house brands. TJ's works with national and international growers and producers to create specific products for its stores following production guidelines and flavor profiles. Trader Joe's reserve wines deliver high quality for an incredible price. One example is from Washington State's Columbia Valley. Trader Joe's Reserve Syrah Wahluke Slope Lot # 237 is bold, expressive, and a steal for only $9.99. 

From one of the warmest parts of the region, the Wahluke Slope receives only six inches of rainfall annually, requiring vines to dig deep into the earth to find nutrients. This effort results in hearty vines that produce robust grapes, leading to rich, powerful wines, particularly in the area's signature grape, syrah. 

TJ's syrah is grown following organic practices and is the perfect example of wines from the region, showcasing power with restraint and balance with energy. The tannins are chewy and savory. The acidity is crunchy and bright thanks to the cool nights during the growing season, shifting from hot daytime temperatures to lock-in freshness. Its flavors are bold, spicy, and slightly smoky, layering wild berries and black cherries with woody herbs, inky balsamic, and toasted spice. Pair the wine with a spicy, creamy Cajun noodle pasta or slow braised lamb shank.

10. Espiral, Vinho Verde, non-vintage

Vinho verde, always a good value wine, is perfect for picnics, hot summer days, and summer holiday potlucks. Another Portuguese wine varietal, vinho verde often sports a light, pleasurable fizz (though not fully sparkling) and a gentle, bright palate to match.

For just $5.49, Espiral satisfies the vinho verde enthusiast searching for light, crisp, freshly cut sour apple notes. Reminiscent of a Green Apple Talking Rain or the best sparkling waters, Espirall gives off wine-spritzer vibes without having to mix a cocktail. Made from an undisclosed specificity of white grapes from the Miho region of Northern Portugal (alvarinho, arinto, azal, avesso, loureiro, and trajadura), the winemakers also sell a vinho verde rosé at the same cost.

At only 9% ABV, Espiral possesses a minimal reductive quality immediately after being poured, and until the wine hits the tongue, it could be understandably mistaken for a sauvignon blanc. Once the spritely (but sparse) bubbles mingle with the palate, an iceberg lettuce quality comes through, and we're reminded of long nights of hanging out on a porch. A wine that doesn't necessarily need food to be enjoyed, we'd love a long pour of Espiral with ceviche, vegetable gazpacho, or other foods just as chilled as we like this varietal of wine.

9. Porta 6 Vinho Tinto, 2021

Somewhat of a fan favorite amongst Trader Joe's wine enthusiasts (such as Reverse Wine Snob), Trader Joe's has stocked Porta 6 Vinho Tinto in its stores through handfuls of vintages, and its busy and colorful illustration may be familiar in a mere glance.

Made of a 50% blend of aragonez (the Portuguese word for tempranillo), castelao (40%), and touriga nacional (10%) grapes, the red blend hails from a wine region in Lisbon, Portugal, known for its numerous subregions and varied styles of production (including sweet wines like brandy).

For just $5.99, the most recent vintage of Porta 6 (2021) boasts its dominant grape's tobacco-scented edge with a little jammy, red fruit notes brought in by the castelao. Deep in color and medium-bodied overall, Porto 6 is best paired with red, possibly stewed meats with plenty of sauce to soak up the boldness of the wine itself. Much friendlier on the palette after about forty minutes to breathe, this Portuguese value wine smells cedarish on the nose but tastes of condensed red berries with a little bit of forest bramble.

Not a quaffable, anytime wine, we'd save Porta 6 for a dinner party where several heavy items dominate the table space, and red wine drinkers are mostly present.

8. Ruggero di Bardo Annversario Apulia, 2021

From Southern Italy's Puglia region, Ruggero di Bardo Anniversario Apulia Rosso is rich and fleshy, with layers of dried berries, figs, and raisins. Though there is no indication of the type of varieties included in the wine, the regional designation leads us to believe it is likely a blend of primitivo, negroamaro, or both, as the two Italian grapes are popular red varieties in the area. 

Few details about the wine are shared on the label beyond the name, region, and alcohol percentage by volume of 14.5%, so we are unsure of the wine's production, harvest date, aging time, or barrel composition. Still, by the taste, we can discern the grapes were likely picked and then allowed to dry on mats or palates, concentrating the sugars and the flavors, as they do in the production of Veneto's Amarone wine. The Puglia wine is under $10.

In contrast, Amarone is significantly higher in price. The drying process creates the wine's dried fruit notes. These flavors combine with herbs, spices, and cedar, resulting in a multi-layered yet smooth, approachable wine. There is a hot alcoholic bite upon the initial opening of the wine, so we recommend decanting it and allowing it to breathe for an hour before enjoying it. Pair it with a fatty, grilled ribeye steak, balancing the wine's fruitiness while the wine cuts through the meat's richness.

7. Grigio Luna, Pinot Grigio, 2021

Though slightly off-trend, pinot grigio remains one of the most well-known white grapes. Produced throughout the globe, this crowd-pleasing pinot grigio hails from Northern Italy and delivers that classic Meyer lemon, fruit salad whiffs on the nose before dissolving into something perkier and mineral-driven on the tongue.

A nice balance between a super dry, acidic muscadet and a sweeter, more clingy wine like (some) rieslings, the Grigio Luna pinot grigio sells for $6 a bottle and will bring back memories of backyard parties at a backyard barbecue.

Unserious but extremely approachable, we'd keep a bottle of Grigio Luna on hand for whenever our friends' wine-devoted moms come over for dinner or those times when we're eating an assembly of dishes. For Arabic foods where parsley and lemon play a major role, Grigio Luna plays well with herbs, sour citrus, and grassy olive oils. Perfect for a mezze platter or green goddess salad, we'd also happily drink a glass with a simple chicken salad or pasta primavera.

6. Villa Antica, Asolo Prosecco, non-vintage

The second Prosecco featured on this list, Villa Antica's Asolo Prosecco has a softer, silkier bubble than most other Proseccos at Trader Joe's and can stand alone without juices or spirits. At only $7.99, Asolo represents the baseline for what we look for in a decent bottle of sparkling wine.

Though we'll never stop waxing about why not to refer to every wine with bubbles as "Champagne," we recognize that sparkling wine's appeal sometimes has as much to do with the quality of the wine itself as the mood to celebrate. So, being able to quickly suss out an acceptable bottle with limited resources makes having a couple stowed away in your back pocket (or wine fridge) nearly priceless.

Villa Antica, a winery solely dedicated to the art of Prosecco production, carries a nose so gentle its hard to determine a first impression on smell alone. After sipping, a noticeable high-acid zest can be detected as well as a vanilla lace; don't let the "extra dry" signification fool you, though; the classifications of Prosecco range from off-dry (the sweetest) to brut (the least sweet). Asolo does have a significant amount of saccharine notes that we like among spicy food like Thai curries and Sichuan dishes,

5. Caretaker Pinot Noir, 2021

No list would be complete without a pinot noir entry, and for those of us who enjoy the light but somehow shadowy dimensions of a pinot, Caretaker Wine's newest vintage (2021) satisfies the general yearning for the grape without checking all of the boxes of a truly great wine. But, for $9.99, we don't expect an otherworldly experience so much as one that can make our worldly one slightly more enjoyable for a glass (or two).

A new world wine from Santa Maria Valley on California's coast, the AVA includes both San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara — lower and often warmer than our ideal pinot noir region, the wine itself can only be found inside the automatic doors of Trader Joe's chains. And just as we wonder about who makes Trader Joe's foods, this bottle leads us to ponder which of the Californian wineries it might originate from.

On the nose, the wine is first taken in as exceptionally jammy and tinged with oak, but after a few minutes in the glass, the pinot tastes softer and more complex than a whiff suggests. Even slightly savory, we'd enjoy Caretaker's pinot with lean red meats (like a skirt steak), hearty salads, and stir-fried Asian dishes without much heat.

4. Trader Joe's Petit Reserve, Cabernet Franc, 2022

Single-varietal bottled cabernet franc is not the most common wine you will find. In the last decade or so, the option became available, as traditionally, the red grape variety has been a part of the blend in the production of Bordeaux, or Bordeaux-style wines. 

Historically, cabernet franc has taken a secondary role in wine-making due to the grape's tendency to produce under-ripe bunches or clusters that mix ripe and unripe grapes. If the grape harvest occurs before the fruit achieves full ripeness, it can have vegetal notes of green bell pepper and freshly cut grass. These characteristics can be off-putting in a single-varietal red wine. 

Thankfully, modern winemakers are taking the time and effort to adequately grow cabernet franc to ensure the grapes reach their full potential, as evidenced in Trader Joe's Petit Reserve offering. The wine delivers layers of bright red and black fruits, like raspberry, blueberry, and plum, with savory roasted red pepper, fresh tobacco, espresso, and mocha. 

The 14.1% alcohol by volume wine has freshness and balance, with subtle notes of pencil lead and toasted oak rounding out the palate and pairing perfectly with herbaceous game dishes, like rosemary-brined guinea hen or pan-roasted duck. Costing only $7.99 a bottle, this is a wine you should buy by the case, not just the bottle.

3. Opaline Brut Rosé, non-vintage

Don't judge a book by its cover, and don't judge a bottle of wine by its garish, gaudy, textured bottle. Made entirely from pinot noir grapes, Opaline brut rosé comes in a bottle resembling a Kat Von D lipstick casing and looks like a prop in a corny Netflix comedy like "Emily in Paris."

On closer inspection, Opaline seems more like an overdressed date who looks better in jeans. With a soft salmony, pink hue, Opaline's sharp, fine bubbles dissipate on the tongue nicely and without a cloying gasp of sugar.

Another wine from the Languedoc region in France, a bottle of Opaline only runs $7.99 and is the perfect brunch companion for daytime parties involving small snacks. Like many sparkling rosés, Opaline is one of those wines that taste better with some foods (we'd love a lox bagel with a healthy swipe of cream cheese) but doesn't disappoint with more off-the-wall food pairings like fried chicken or white cupcakes. As the bubbles settle on the drinker's tongue, they also dry the palette and leave one ready for a new onslaught of flavor.

Whispers of blooming strawberries and hints of rosewater considered, we'd look for this easy-to-spot bottle whenever a bachelorette party or baby shower invite arrives.

2. Trader Joe's Petit Reserve Rosé Coteaux d'Aix-en-Provence, 2022

Something remarkable happens when you sip a special bottle of wine. The air is fresher, the sun is brighter, and the world is better and more enjoyable. We feel this while sipping Trader Joe's Petit Reserve Rosé Coteaux d'Aix-en-Provence. 

With a $7.99 price tag, this gorgeous rosé likely has the typical blend of Rhone varieties growing in Provence, like syrah, grenache, and mourvedre, with a minimum of 20% grenache to adhere to regional French regulations. Though little is known about the wine, aside from its production zone, the labeling does inform the consumer of its ecological focus. The bottle's back label contains the haute valeur environnementale seal (high environmental value), a certification recognizing earth-friendly farming. A minimum of 95% of the finished product's raw materials must follow these practices to carry the logo. 

Aside from the environmental focus and incredible price point, the wine is delicious. With an aromatic and inviting profile, the wine has a pale salmon pink color and layers of citrus blossom, ripe melon, orchard and stone fruit flowers, fresh honeysuckle, and a hint of crushed stone minerality on the finish. 

Provence, France, is one of the world's leading producers of rosé wine, with many of the area's top selections costing much more than Trader Joe's. Still, the quality and price of TJ's product make this one of the best rosé wines under $10 at Trader Joe's and from all of Provence.

1. Vignobles Lacheteau, muscadet sèvre maine, 2020

The grape we depend on overall when searching for a bottle under $15, muscadet, or melon de bourgogne, has been a reliable resource anytime we find ourselves at a conventional grocery store. Though grown in the states (such as Oregon), the grape that produces the light, white wine is domestically referred to as simply melon and rarely produces a pronounced zing.

Bone dry, with tangy, briny notes, muscadet is a natural pairing for oysters on the half shell as their saline-like flavors harmoniously meld together. At only $7.99, Trader Joe's muscadet offering delivers an exceptionally tart, acidic zest before spreading out into a more salty flavor. Light in color and body, the melon du bourgogne is the hidden jewel on Trader Joe's shelves.

As a sur lie wine (meaning aged on lees or dead yeast particles), the Vignobles Lacheteau succeeds more than most storebought muscadets and can be drunk with or without foods. Though when pairing, we suggest raw fish or crudo (without the presence of spice), crab salad, and simple, poached shrimp.

A little bit of a love-it-or-hate-it grape, muscadet's sharpness reminds us of a quick-witted romantic comedy; look for this bottle in most Trader Joe's in both the French wine and white wine sections, though its generic label can be hard to spot.