Kitchn Love Letters

The $8 California White Our Wine Expert Is Buying at Aldi All Summer

published Jul 4, 2023
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Peterlee / Great Britain - March 11, 2019: Display of alcohol wine on shelves in supermarket for sale
Credit: ML Robinson/Shutterstock

I’ve always rolled my eyes at “low-calorie” wines, but something inspired me to grab a bottle of the Don’t Mind If I Do Sauvignon Blanc on my last trip to Aldi, and I was pleasantly surprised. At 85 calories per serving, the calories aren’t that much lower than they are for a glass of your average Sauvignon Blanc, which usually contains about 120 calories. But what really intrigued me was that it’s also lower in alcohol at 9% ABV (alcohol by volume). 

I’m a total lightweight (even after close to 20 years in the wine business!), and I’m always interested in wines that are a little lower in alcohol so I can have a few more sips.

What’s So Great About Don’t Mind If I Do Sauvignon Blanc?

I enjoy cheap Sauvignon Blanc the way I enjoy Vanderpump Rules: a little sheepishly, in my pajamas on the couch. Inexpensive Sauvignon Blancs are often harvested early and by machine, and both of these things tend to produce sharp, grassy, vegetal aromas that remind some people of canned jalapeños. There’s none of that here, which surprised me, given that this wine is both inexpensive and lower in calories.

Instead there are some nice ripe citrus aromas of meyer lemon and lime blossom, along with a pleasant honeydew melon note. It also has a surprisingly full, almost creamy texture typical of California Sauvignon Blanc.

These more subtle flavors might be from the wine-making techniques used here. I’m not 100% sure how this wine is made, but I suspect that it’s a blend of dealcoholized wine and untreated Sauvignon Blanc. The alcohol removal process can remove some aromas and flavors in addition to alcohol, which most of the time is a bad thing. But because Sauvignon Blanc is a variety that can be over-the-top for some people (come to think of it, the same thing could be said for VPR), in this case it just made this wine a little more mellow and wiped out any overly grassy notes, leaving those rounder citrus and melon flavors.  

Credit: Diane McMartin

What’s the Best Way to Drink Don’t Mind If I Do Sauvignon Blanc?

Cold out of a tumbler (by the pool, preferably!). The fresh, citrusy flavors and lower alcohol make this great for a little day drinking — especially in a sunny, sweaty situation where you don’t want to overdo it on the alcohol. This would also be good with Thai food or grilled chicken with a sweeter barbecue sauce, which makes it perfect for cookouts or a night in with takeout. 

Find it in stores: Don’t Mind If I Do Sauvignon Blanc, $7.99 for 750 milliliters

Have you tried this white wine from Aldi? Tell us about it in the comments!