Win Your Love Over with these Valentine’s Wines

by Robin Barr Sussman on February 7, 2024 in Food+Drink,

Heart-throbbing reds, racy whites, bubbles, or wines pretty in pink. There’s a special vino for every palate, pocketbook and repast to make February 14 the most romantic—or festive—ever. Read on!


ADAMVS + Château Fonplégade

Photo Kim Carroll

California-based Denise and Stephen Adams are owners of two highly esteemed estates showcasing organic and biodynamic wines of the highest quality. Produced in the legendary Saint-Émilion wine region of Bordeaux, Château Fonplégade, a blend of merlot and cabernet franc, is characterized by a sophisticated minerality with supple tannins, balanced fruit, and velvety texture. ADAMVS on Howell Mountain in Napa Valley recently released its 2019 flagship cabernet sauvignon, which unveils aromas that transport you to the mountain estate, where scents of Mediterranean herbs fill the air. On the opulent mouthfeel, silky tannins unfold to mixed berries, earth, sweet tobacco, and mineral. Both properties are featured in a new AppleTV film titled, “Eastbound Westbound,” an original wine documentary delving into the historical links between the United States, Bordeaux, and its wines.


 Allegrini 2022 Palazzo della Torre

A love song to Italy, this famous yet affordable ruby red blend of grapes grown in Valpolicella boasts beautiful notes of vanilla, black pepper, and cloves. Fresh and lively yet velvety, pair it with grilled steak and garlic mashed potatoes.


Bryn Mawr Vineyards Brut Rosé Willamette Valley, Oregon

The thick creamy mousse that rises to the top of this newly released brut is Insta-worthy and its pinot noir-tinged hue is rosy. Easy pop top!


BUDHAGIRL Sparkling Wine

New BUDHAGIRL sparkling celebrates the rituals of ceremony and celebration. The hot pink bottle is an eye-opener and inside, prepare for a beautiful California brut with bubbles that dance on the tongue. It belongs at every Galentine’s celebration.


Dutcher Crossing 2019 Proprietor’s Reserve Maple Vineyard Zinfandel

Looking for yin and yang? This versatile, Dry Creek Valley zinfandel is for those who prefer a ripe, fruit-forward red just right for cookouts. Pair it with sweet and spicy Korean fare or smoked turkey with rich BBQ sauce. The winery also highlights lesser-known bottles including Carignane and exquisite rosé of grenache.


Etude 2020 Carneros Pinot Gris

From the svelte bottle to its exotic fruits of kiwi, lychee and guava, and creaminess balanced with minerality, this is romance in a bottle. The addition of Gewurztraminer adds mouthwatering zing that any white wine fan would love.


Imagery Estate Winery Monterey County Pinot Noir

Besides its popular pinot noirs, look for the Sonoma Valley winery’s other impressive varietals with artful labels. Try the sangiovese, white Burgundy, albarino, primitivo or tempranillo for a dinner pairing thrill. 


Inglenook 2021 Sauvignon Blanc Napa Valley

Perfect with oysters, the aphrodisiac food, Inglenook’s classic exudes youthfulness with aromas of honeysuckle, grapefruits and lemongrass. The palate is lively – hopefully like your date! – with solid acidity and creaminess.


Intrinsic Wine Co. Red Blend

Columbia Valley in Washington State produces this blend flaunting notes of raspberry, fresh mint and tea leaves. Anticipate layers of flavors just right for the occasion – bright raspberry, fig reduction, dark plum and chocolate ganache on the finish.



This cheerful, easy to locate sparkler is perfect for weekend brunch or a cheeseboard happy hour nosh. Balanced with a medium-dry finish, expect lively aromas of citrus and cinnamon leading to crisp flavors of orange, lime, vanilla and a hint of strawberry. Brut rosé is another option, and if you can get your hands on low residual sugar KORBEL Brut Natural Russian River Valley, even better!


LangeTwins Family Chardonnay 2021 Merrill Vineyard

Here’s a refreshing California blend of green apple and citrus with a touch of toasty oak, making it versatile and approachable in flavor and price. Pair it with special occasion dishes like buttery lobster tails, grilled salmon or pasta with shaved truffles to add a touch of elegance.


REMY 2021 Black Heart Méthode Champenoise Sparkling

REMY’S white sparkler is crafted with all pinot noir grapes grown at the family Estate Vineyard in the Dundee Hills of the Willamette Valley, Oregon. Lovely notes of nectarines, persimmons mineral and brine of seashells are kissed with preserved lemon, tea roses and cherries.


Stolpman 2022 Love You Bunches Sangiovese

Photo Julie Soefer

The bottle says it all, but what’s inside counts even more. Boutique producer Stolpman Vineyards in central California began producing carbonic sangiovese to make a fresher lighter version of the varietal. In this method, the grapes remain whole uncrushed, so the typical tannins are not released. The result is bright red raspberry, red currant, rhubarb, and violet notes. Buy it at fine wine shops, Whole Foods Market, and Montrose Cheese & Wine Houston.


Tapestry Wines Paso Robles’ 2021 Red Blend 

From the makers of Napa Valley’s iconic Beaulieu Vineyard, this new, approachable brand is an alluring blend of cabernet sauvignon, syrah, and petite sirah, showcasing dark berry aromas and flavors with notes of wild sage and lavender. Full-bodied and smooth with hints of mocha and spice, mouthwatering acidity persists until the lovely finish.


VARA Silverhead Brut

Crafted by legendary sparkling winemaker and New Mexico resident Laurent Gruet, the well-priced VARA brut displays crisp acidity with balanced notes of brioche, apple and honeysuckle – lip-smacking for whatever is on the menu Valentine’s Day including Manchego cheese straws or crispy prawn sushi rolls. The chardonnay blend is made in the classic méthode champenoise style for crisp, fine bubbles and a smooth mousse.


Cover photo courtesy Imagery Estate Winery

Robin Barr Sussman ( is a freelance culinary and travel writer who studied at the Culinary Institute of America Greystone, Calif. As a chef for Sonoma County wineries, her specialty was food and wine pairing. Sussman is a columnist for Houston Modern Luxury, Houston CityBook Magazine, Prime Living and Houston House & Home. Her work also appears in Texas Monthly, Fodor’s and Private Clubs Magazine.