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Safe bets for the beginner
Good reds to try: Iím currently completely enamored with Australian reds, particularly Shiraz. Theyíre very cheap, and very tasty. Try the Rosemount Estate Shiraz/Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz/Grenache blends, each of which generally costs a not-so-whopping $7 or so. The Beaujolais Nouveau (France) wines -- slightly sweet, light- bodied reds -- are also easy to like, and you can get a good bottle for less than $15. Chile and Argentina both produce some fine reds in the $10 or so price range.
Good whites to try: You really canít go wrong with a California Chardonnay in the $10 range. For something a little less pedestrian, however, try a Pinot Grigio (Italy).
When in doubt, ask your friendly winemonger for a recommendation. Provided you arenít doing your wine-shopping at Safeway, he/she is almost sure to be extremely knowledgeable, and more than happy to point you towards a lovely wine at a price you can afford.o