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Drinks: Party season starts

Columbia Winery Cellarmaster's Riesling.

Columbia Winery Cellarmaster's Riesling. Credit: Handout

The party season is under way. You'll be able to offer very good wines at modest prices. Here's a sampler of the well-made, all less than $20, some less than $10.

2009 Covey Run Chardonnay -- For about $9, this Washingtonian is a good match for light chicken and seafood dishes.

2009 Banfi Le Rime Pinot Grigio -- A light, satisfying sipper that's food-friendly, $9.

2009 Columbia Crest Cellarmaster's Riesling -- At about $12, you'll find this fruity foil for spicy fare, Asian to Latin.

2010 Geyser Peak Sauvignon Blanc -- A wine that's ideal company at the raw bar, for about $14.

2009 Mercer Estates Pinot Gris -- Melon and peach flavors drive this subtle, summery white, $17.

2009 Cecchi Bonizio Sangiovese di Maremma -- An easy-drinking, all-purpose red that competes with Chianti, $9.

2010 Bertani Valpolicella -- Fresh, versatile, populist, with plum, cherry, raspberry notes, $15.

2009 Irony Monterey Pinot Noir -- Cherry, licorice, spice, some vanilla, in a coastal pinot right with antipasti, salmon, lamb, $14.

2008 Michel Torino Malbec Don David -- Plummy, toasty and balanced, this is a meaty red from Argentina, $16.

2008 Dow Vale do Bomfim Douro -- From Portugal, a bright, full-bodied choice, right for what's on the grill, burgers to sausages, $12.

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