Two-Buck Chuck has long been a Trader Joe's institution, and now Whole Foods has its own value wine. It's not quite as cheap as the Chuck—Charles Shaw wines go for as low as $1.99—but you can snag the Three Wishes Vineyards offerings for $3. The non-vintage wines come from "an emerging wine-production area" in California, writes Kristine Hansen for Slashfood—and they're not bad. In fact, she declares: "For $3? Good," and says they even beat "a lot of $8-$10 wines."
There's "no detection of oak" in the Chardonnay, which has a "juicy palate" involving pineapple and floral aromas and notes of pineapple and pear. The Merlot isn't as "blah" as most California Merlots, and has "a cigar-box nose" she calls "interesting," easing into "toasty vanilla and some oak on the finish." Lastly, the Cabernet Sauvignon is "a strong effort," considering "it's tough to find a good Cab from the Golden State for under, say, $30 ... if you aren't a typical Cab drinker you will probably like this." Click for more good, cheap US wines.