The Best Gift Wines in 2023

By Gayot Editors

The Best Wines to Give as a Gift

For the wine lover, a bottle of something interesting is always a welcome gift. However, it can be hard to figure out what will surprise someone with an avid interest in wine. We’re helping you out with GAYOT’s list of the Best Gift Wines.

Whether the wine lovers on your gift list are just getting into wine or are serious collectors, there’s something on this list that will surprise them and impress them with your choice. Prices range from $17 to $247.

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1. 2019 Ammunition Wines “The Equalizer” | California, USA

2015 Ammunition Wines “The Equalizer”

Type: Syrah-based blend
Origin: Sonoma County, California, USA
Price: $25
ABV: 14.5%

A very approachable red from California’s Wine Country, this easy-drinking wine is one even white wine drinkers can enjoy.

On the nose it offers black fruit and prune with a hint of vanilla. Sweet berry flavors dominate on the palate, making it a welcome choice to serve with meats marinated in sweet and spicy sauces.

> For more information, visit the Ammunition Wines official website.

2. 2020 Beckmen Cuvée Le Bec | California, USA

2017 Beckmen Cuvée Le Bec

Type: 47% Syrah, 34% Grenache, 11% Mourvèdre, 7% Counoise
Origin: Santa Ynez Valley, California, USA
Price: $29
ABV: 14%

California meets the Rhône with this well-priced red blend. This is an easy-drinking wine with an attractive bouquet of blueberries, forest floor and spice, with just a hint of something floral to give it freshness. On the palate, it offers a silky texture and a refreshing bite of acidity. The only problem with this wine is that you’re sure to run out quickly, so keep an extra bottle or two handy.

> For more information, visit the Beckmen official website.

3. Bouchaine, 2019 Carneros | Napa Valley, California, USA

Pinot noir 2019 Bouchaine Carneros

Origin: Carneros, Napa Valley, California
Varietal: 100% Pinot Noir
Price: $40.00
ABV: 14.3%

Bouchaine is the oldest continuously operating winery in Carneros, a region located on the southern tip of Napa Valley. In the late 1880s, a Missouri-born settler named Boon Fly planted grapes and fruit trees on the property. An Italian winemaker named Johnny Garetto bought the land in 1927 and farmed it until 1961, when he sold to Beringer. Twenty years later, the dilapidated winery was purchased by Gerret and Tatiana Copeland who made it into a state-of-the-art winery.

The wine shows a bright ruby color. The bouquet flashes ripe strawberries, cherries, rose petals and spices. The palate is smooth, filled with lush red fruit, vibrant acidity and smooth tannins resulting in an easy-drinking Pinot Noir ready to drink now.

> For more information, visit Bouchaine official webs

4. 2020 Cline Ancient Vines Carignane | California, USA

2017 Cline Ancient Vines Carignane

Type: 100% Carignan
Origin: Contra Costa County, California, USA
Price: $27
ABV: 15%

This wine practically bursts from the glass with a perfume of violets and plums, espresso and clove. It’s a big wine that packs a punch of alcohol, so don’t let it sneak up on you.

You’re likely to be so attracted to its bright acidity and lingering finish that you’ll find it hard to turn down that second (or third) glass.

> For more information, visit the Cline official website.

5. Lang & Reed ‘Two-Fourteen’ 2017 Cabernet Franc

2014 Lang & Reed Cabernet Franc

Varietal: Cabernet Franc
Origin: Napa Valley, California, USA
Price: $85
ABV: 14.5%

The Napa Valley is definitely a region with any number of special occasion wines worthy of your meal. Although most Napa Valley red wine lovers will probably instinctively reach for a Cabernet Sauvignon, we’re inclined to recommend something different.

Lang & Reed is a winery focused on Cabernet, but not Cabernet Sauvignon. This winery produces what’s recognized as some of America’s best Cabernet Franc.

The wine’s name comes from the single grape clone used to make this wine, Clone 214 from France’s Loire Valley. It offers ripe blueberry and blackberry aromas and flavors, but an underlying savory, dried herb note and hint of black pepper is what really gives it a special character. This Cabernet Franc lingers long on the palate and is sure to please any lover of Napa reds.

6. 2017 Marciano Estate M Proprietary Red Wine

2015 Marciano Estate M Proprietary Red Wine

Origin: St. Helena, California
Varietal: 72% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot
Price: $247 for 750 ml.
ABV: 14.8%

You may be shocked to learn that the Marciano California estate was first planted with vines in the late 1800s. Although the estate didn’t produce its own commercial label until it was purchased by Maurice Marciano in 2006, it was a grape producing property for more than a century. Marciano made a reputation for itself as a producer of remarkable red wines.

If you have lovers of Napa reds in your life, they are going to have their socks knocked off by this wine. A huge Cabernet-dominant blend, it offers aromas of black cherry, espresso and sweet baking spices. Super concentrated yet finely focused, it’s a beautifully made wine with dark fruit, spice and lingering caramel on the finish.

> For more information, visit official website. 

7. 2016 Peter Michael Chardonnay “La Carrière”

2016 Peter Michael Chardonnay “La Carrière”

Origin: Knights Valley, California
Varietal: 100% Chardonnay
Price: $140 for 750 ml.
ABV: 13.9%

Although Chardonnay may have fallen out of fashion for a time, Napa’s Peter Michael Winery stayed true to the grape. The winery is considered by many in the industry to be America’s finest Chardonnay producer, or at least in the top five.

But the 2016 La Carrière is a special wine, even by Peter Michael’s standards, and one that easily makes GAYOT’s list of Best Gift Wines. A single vineyard wine coming from Peter Michael’s Knights Valley estate, it is a Chardonnay of great elegance. Aromas include almond, toasted brioche, honey and ripe pear. Medium-bodied, it offers notes of pear and stone fruit flavors with bright citrus acidity and an intriguing thread of minerality.

> For more information, visit the Peter Michael Winery official website. 

8. 2016 Marqués de Riscal Barón de Chirel

2010 Marqués de Riscal Barón de Chirel

Origin: Rioja, Spain
Varietal: 65% Tempranillo, 35% Others
Price: $90 for 750 ml.
ABV: 14.5%

Marqués de Riscal is one of the oldest Rioja wineries. Barón de Chirel is a limited production wine and one that they only produce in the best vintage years.

The collector on your list will be delighted to add this Rioja to his or her cellar. Cocoa and bramble dominate on the nose with a vegetal note adding dimension. Its jammy, blackberry and dried cherry fruit notes are held in check, giving the wine refinement.

> For more information, visit the Marqués de Riscal official website. 

9. 2015 Ashton Hills Reserve Pinot Noir

2015 Ashton Hills Reserve Pinot Noir

Origin: Adelaide Hills, Australia
Varietal: Pinot Noir
Price: $49 for 750 ml.
ABV: 14.5%

The Pinot Noir lover on your list has probably already done a thorough exploration of the wines of Burgundy, California and Oregon, but they might not realize that the hills just outside of Adelaide, South Australia, also offer perfect Pinot Noir growing conditions.

Ashton Hills is considered a pioneer in Adelaide Hills Pinot and the 2015 Reserve showcases the winery’s legacy. A dark and smoky wine, its ripe cherry fruit is balanced by earthy notes and an almost intangible gaminess. It’s a wine that could be drunk now or cellared for several years.

> For more information, visit the Ashton Hills official website. 

10. 2019 Domaine Huët “Le Mont” Vouvray Sec

2017 Domaine Huët "Le Mont" Vouvray Sec

Origin: Vouvray, France
Varietal: Chenin Blanc
Price: $50 for 750 ml.
ABV: 11%

Domaine Huët has a reputation as one of the finest producers in Vouvray. This heralded winery owns some of the Loire’s finest vineyards, including Le Mont.

Farmed biodynamically, Le Mont consistently produces fine wines, but the 2019 Sec may be one of the best. The white wine lover in your life will appreciate this single vineyard Chenin’s full body. On the nose it offers notes of wildflowers and quince with just a hint of its lemony acidity. It’s a wine with great vibrancy and a long, creamy finish.

> For more information, visit the distributor’s website. 

11. 2017 Col Solare Cabernet Sauvignon

2015 Col Solare Cabernet Sauvignon

Origin: Red Mountain, Washington
Varietal: 97% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Cabernet Franc
Price: $75 for 750 ml.
ABV: 14.5%

Col Solare is a fascinating partnership between Tuscany’s Marchesi Antinori and Washington’s Chateau Ste. Michelle. The relatively young partnership was built around the idea of creating the best possible Cabernet Sauvignon.

The Washington wine lover on your list may have already heard of this wine but will likely be thrilled to be handed a bottle. This is a decadent Cabernet. On the nose there are hints of black cherry, blueberry and dark chocolate. It’s tightly knit with dark berry fruits, vanilla, oak and spice in the palate and a lingering note of cocoa powder on the finish.

> For more information, visit the Col Solare official website.

12. 2017 Groom Wines Barossa Valley Shiraz

2016 Groom Wines Barossa Valley Shiraz

Origin: Barossa Valley, Australia
Varietal: 100% Syrah
Price: $33 for 750 ml.
ABV: 14.5%

Groom Wines is a fairly new boutique Australian winery founded by vintner Daryl Groom. Wine lovers may not know Groom by name but they’ll know him by reputation. By age 30, Groom became the head winemaker for Penfolds and was the maker of Australia’s most famous wine, Grange Hermitage.

Groom’s own Shiraz is a more demure wine than Grange and it’s an excellent value for lovers of Aussie Shiraz. Coming from Barossa Valley fruit, this is a dense wine but one with more to offer than jammy fruit. On the nose there are hints of blackberry, currant and exotic spice. It’s a wine with great structure, bright berry flavors, anise and touches of mocha and baking spices. The Shiraz lover on your list will certainly agree with this pick for our Best Gift Wines.

> For more information, visit the Groom Wines official website. 

13. 2020 Parparoussis Petite Fleur Rosé Table Wine

2017 Parparoussis Petite Fleur Rosé Table Wine

Origin: Peloponnese, Greece
Varietal: 100% Sideritis
Price: $17 for 750 ml.
ABV: 12.5%

If there are rosé lovers on your list, surprise them with a wine they’ve likely never experienced before. In fact, it’s unlikely they’ve ever tried any wine made from this rare, Peloponnese grape. And for less than $20, you can take them on a rosé odyssey they won’t soon forget.

Made by the Parparoussis sisters, this Sideritis is a stunningly salmon-colored rosé. It offers pretty notes of citrus blossom and apricot on the nose. There’s a surprising, tart freshness on the palate with flavors of cranberries and fresh strawberries. A lovely minerality helps extend the finish.

> For more information, visit the Parparoussis official website. 

14. 2019 Murrieta’s Well The Spur Red Wine Blend

2016 Murrieta’s Well The Spur Red Wine Blend

Origin: Livermore Valley, California
Varietal: 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 9% Merlot, 6% Petite Sirah, 7% Malbec, 5% Petit Verdot
Price: $40 for 750 ml
ABV: 14.5%

This is a bottle for the wine lover on your list who enjoys the unexpected and will never anticipate a wine with this elegance and restraint to come from California’s Livermore Valley. Murrieta’s Well is an estate-grown winery that celebrates the climate and terroir of the Livermore Valley. It is clear from their wines that they truly understand which grapes work in the region.

Their 2019 Red Blend is a complex wine for the price, which is why it makes our list of the Best Gift Wines. It offers bright cherry and berry aromas. Its blackberry, black plum and cherry fruit flavors show pleasing restraint and are backed up by vanilla and the heat of clove near the finish.

> For more information, visit the Murrietta’s Well official website.

15. 2008 Nicolas Feuillatte Palmes d’Or Brut Rosé

2006 Nicolas Feuillatte Palmes d’Or Brut Rosé

Origin: Chouilly, Champagne, France
Varietal: 100% Pinot Noir
Price: $160 for 750 ml.
ABV: 12%

This tête de cuvée from Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte makes a perfect gift Champagne. Feuillatte is known for expert packaging and marketing and with this bottle they do not disappoint. Its curvaceous black bottle is dimpled to mimic strands of black pearls.

This is the wine for the hedonists in your life. They will delight not only in this pink fizz but the package in which it’s delivered. A big, ripe Brut Rosé Champagne, it offers powerful berry notes with an underlying gaminess. It is a Champagne fit for a meal but is almost as satisfying as a meal all on its own.

> For more information, visit the Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte official website.