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Tell Us Your Favorite Popular Wine And We'll Give You An Underrated One That's Even Better

Put down the Pinot Grigio.

Sure, you've heard of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay by now. But there's a whole world of wine — including hundreds and hundreds of varietals — that are lesser-known and totally delicious. Here are a some new kinds of wine to look for based on your current favorites. 🍷

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1. If you like Pinot Noir, try Gamay.

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Pinot Noir is one of the most universally liked wines because it's easy to drink, light-bodied, and it pairs with lots of different foods.

Gamay, a grape from Burgundy's Beaujolais region, is the perfect alternative. In fact, Gamay is often considered a cousin to Pinor Noir because it is grown right next to some of the most famous Pinot producing regions in France. You can expect a similar light red wine that tastes like red fruit with a little bit of earthiness to it. Best of all, since Gamay is usually consumed young and not aged, you can find some great quality bottles for $20 or less.

2. Or try Blaufränkisch.

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Blaufränkisch, an Austrian red wine, is just as delicious to drink as it is fun to say. Like Pinot Noir and Gamay, it's an acidic and highly drinkable wine that you can pair with anything from fish to lighter meats and pastas.

Most bottles of Blaufränkisch are characterized by fruit flavors, particularly the taste of black cherries. If you're looking for an affordable, tasty wine that you can serve at your next dinner party, Blaufränkisch is a good bet.

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3. If you like Merlot, try Nerello Mascalese.

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Nerello Mascalese, a red wine grape native to Sicily, is a people-pleasing grape. It is elegant and easy to drink, but it is a bit more structured and heartier than a Pinot Noir.

Like Merlot, it has both acidity and tannins. Look for wines labeled "Etna Rosso," which is a Sicilian region where the wines are made of Nerello Mascalese. Because they're grown on volcanic soil, these wines are often a delicious mix of bold, earthy, and fruity.

4. If you like Cabernet Sauvignon, try Tempranillo.

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Like Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo is bold, structured, and big. It's one of Spain's major grapes, and it's the predominant grape in the Rioja wine region, known for some of the best Spanish wines. If you have a bottle of wine labeled Rioja, you know you're drinking wine made from Tempranillo grapes.

In addition to cherry and dark fruit flavors, you'll also get some notes of tobacco and spice. If you're eating a hearty meal like steak or barbecue, Tempranillo is a perfect match.

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5. Or try Touriga Nacional.

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Touriga Nacional comes from Portugal. Like Cabernet Sauvignon and Tempranillo, Touriga Nacional makes full-bodied wines that can be aged for a long time. Youn wines made from Touriga Nacional can be extremely tannic (the feeling when your mouth gets dry after taking a sip of wine), but they get softer and more elegant with age.

But the reason to really keep Touriga Nacional in mind? These Portuguese wines are incredibly affordable, far more so than Cabernet Sauvignon.

6. If you like Malbec, try Carménère.

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Carménère first originated in Bordeaux, the French wine region now known for its world renowned blends of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, but today you'll most often find it from Chile.

Full in body and velvety in texture, it's similar to Malbec. And like Malbec, Carménère is both fruit-forward and a bit herbaceous with a peppery taste. You can expect to find a really great bottle of Carménère for $20, with plenty of even more affordable options.

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7. If you like Sauvignon Blanc, try Grüner Veltliner.

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It's possible you've never heard of Grüner Veltliner, a white wine that grows almost exclusively in Austria, but it's one to put on your radar. Like Sauvignon Blanc, Grüner is highly acidic (think: lots of citrus flavors) which makes it a delicious summer option. You can spend about $15 dollars for a really solid bottle, which makes it all the more appealing.

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8. If you like Chardonnay, try Falanghina.

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Falanghina is one of the most ancient wine grapes that is now grown mostly in Campania, the Italian region that borders the Tyrrhenian Sea and is home to the Amalfi Coast.

This wine is full of lemon, orange blossom, pear, and apple, making it a great substitute for a cooler climate Chardonnay. It's the perfect match for seafood, but it can also stand up to heavier foods like pizza and grilled chicken.

9. If you like Pinot Grigio, try Assyrtiko.

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Imagine eating a big, fresh Greek salad loaded with ripe tomatoes, creamy feta cheese, and crunchy cucumbers...or a plate of grilled shrimp or branzino drizzled in olive oil and lemon. Assyrtiko, a white wine from Greece (and Santorini, in particular), is exactly what you'll want to pair with it. Like Pinot Grigio, Assyrtiko is generally a very easy drink. Because it's so acidic, you can gulp it down like juice if you're not careful.

10. If you like Riesling, try Chenin Blanc.

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If you're well versed in Riesling, you probably know that this popular grape produces both sweet and dry wines. That is also the case with Chenin Blanc, a full-bodied white wine that is most often associated with France's Loire Valley but also popular in South Africa. Chenin Blanc is used to make a huge variety of wines: sparkling wines, wines so dry they make your lips pucker, and others so sweet you can drink them with dessert. For dry Chenin Blancs, look for wines from Saumur, Touraine, or Anjou.

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Need easy dinner ideas?

These meals will make your weeknights way simpler. (And tastier!)

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