Written by: Jamie

Updated: January 5, 2024

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14 Best Wines for People that Don’t Like Wine in 2023

Are you someone who doesn't understand what all the fuss is about with wine? Check out my guide to the best wines for people that don’t (yet) like wine!

man choosing wine

Wine can be incredibly intimidating. Particularly to people who are new to it.

There are many people that start on their wine journey by simply not liking the taste of wine either.

That's where I aim to help!

I've put together a handy guide you can follow that includes the best wines for people who don’t like wine.

These are approachable wines that are sometimes fruity, sometimes sweet, and not too overpowering with alcohol.

I recommend the best tasting reds, whites, and sparkling wines for usually non-wine drinkers.

I even recommend the specific bottles you need to try!

Best White Wines To Try for Beginners

It’s all about your own preference whether you start your wine drinking experience with white or red.

White wines are usually more delicate and lighter in body

Great white wines for beginners are usually a little sweet, fruity, and low on that alcohol "punch" that puts many people off alcoholic drinks.

Here are my recommendations:


This is a German wine that can be anything from very dry to very sweet.

People love Riesling for its light body, lively acidity and flavors of minerals and fresh citrus.

14. Chateau Ste. Michelle Harvest Select Sweet Riesling

chateau ste. michelle harvest select sweet riesling

If you love peach you'll love this sweet Riesling. It's fruity and light and held in really high regard despite its lowly $10 price tag.

It's a great introduction to white wine, especially for those that have tried white wine in the past and not liked it. 

You can buy it here.

13. Kung Fu Girl Riesling 2021

I had the pleasure of drinking this wine for a recent review and it really surprised me. I had tried it before and it was just too sweet, but this year the've made some adjustments and they've got it just right.

It's a fairly straightforward fruity Riesling with notes of peach, apricot, and lime. It remains slightly sweet but it's held together by some bright acidity that prevents it from becoming sickly. 

It's advertised as a wine for Asian food and it's an excellent pairing for lightly spiced Chinese or Thai. At just $10 at Costco, grab this and a Chinese takeout and have a lovely time!

Moscato d ‘Asti

A subtlety fizzy and usually sweet delight of a wine from Italy. You are rewarded for your investment with the juicy, crisp and sweet almonds and apricots.

12. Fontanafredda Briccotondo Moscato d'Asti

Fontanafredda Briccotondo Moscato d'Asti 2019

Moscato d'Asti is the sparkling version of Moscato. Light, sweet, with gentle bubbles, it's a wonderfully refreshing wine.

This particular d'Asti is just 5% ABV which makes it a great option for those that don't like their wine to be heavy on alcohol.

You can buy it at wine.com for around $15 usually.

Sauvignon Blanc

This is a refreshing, light bodied white wine that has delicious flavors of citrus and tropical fruit running through it.

Sauvignon Blanc is the white wine you should try if you're not keen on the sweeter recommendations.

It's drier than my other suggestions, with a crisp and refreshing character.

11. Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc 2022

If you love tropical fruits like mango, passion fruit, and lychee then you'll love Sauvignon Blanc from the Marlborough region of New Zealand.

This particular expression from Kim Crawford is one of my favorites. If there's one thing that puts some people off Sauvignon Blanc it's the bright acidity. This particular wine manages it really well with just a tiny bit more residual sugar to balance things. This isn't a sweet wine by any means, it's definitely dry, but it's got great balance.

It's got big fresh tropical fruit notes, a little minerality, and a lovely long and mouth watering finish. You can find it all over the place for around $15. 

You can read my Kim Crawford SB review here. An awesome alternative is the Wairau River Sauvignon Blanc, which ups the tropical fruity notes even more and is a few bucks cheaper.

Pinot Grigio

One of the world’s most popular and newbie-friendly whites is Pinot Grigio.

A crisp and light body, it has delicious characteristics from start to finish.

10. Ziobaffa Organic Pinot Grigio

ziobaffa organic pinot grigio 2020

This Italian white wine is tangy and fresh with flavors of apple and pickled ginger.

It goes really well with light food, especially fish, pasta and chicken.

It retails for around $15, which is great value. It's another white wine that isn't as sweet as something like a Riesling or Moscato.

Best Red Wines to Try for Beginners

It’s best, as with any wine, to start out as simple as possible when it comes to reds. You can move onto more layered and complex wines as you develop your palate.

Red wines can be big and bold with notes of dark fruits and red fruits and a little spice. Red wines also have more of that mouth drying sensation caused by tannins.

If you choose to go down this road, here are some great starter reds.


Syrah and Shiraz (as it’s known in Australia and South Africa), are essentially the same wine.

However, you will find Australian varieties are a bit jammier with a sweeter fruit sensation, whereas Syrahs are a bit more subtle.

Looking for a Syrah, opt for Eaglepoint Ranch or Qupe Central and for Shiraz, try d’Arenberg or Penfold’s.

Shiraz was one of the first wines I really enjoyed drinking and I loved the big fruity nature of it. It's a dry wine but the big fruit flavors make it seem slightly sweet.

9. Jam Jar Sweet Shiraz

For a beginner, we recommend you try the Jam Jar Shiraz from South Africa. It's fruity, semi-sweet and very easy to drink!

Jam Jar sweet shiraz

It also makes a mean strawberry Daquiri cocktail.

You can find it at wine.com for around $10.

Red Blends

Blended wines tend to be on the sweeter side and are usually designed to be approachable (easy to drink!), budget friendly wines. Though you can certainly get some very expensive, nuanced and delicate blends if you so desire.

It's a great starter wine for non-wine drinkers and something that may well inspire you to try other types of wine.

Currently, there are a few really popular bottles to try that represent great value for money.

8. 19 Crimes Red Blend

19 crimes red blend original bottle

Currently taking the world by storm due to some clever marketing, this blend is actually a really nice wine too.

A balanced blend of Merlot, Zinfandel, Syrah, and Cabernet Sauvignon wine grape varieties make this one deliciously sweet and smooth.

Learn more about it in our guide to 19 Crimes Red.

7. Apothic Cab Cabernet Sauvignon

This isn't strictly a blend but in my opinion it should be labelled so. American wine labelling rules dictate that +75% of a stated wine grape need to be included in the wine.

Therefore, some American wines can include other grape varietals and still be labelled as single varietals like Cabernet Sauvignon. That's the case with this wine, which is blended with Zinfandel.

The Zinfandel plays a big part in the character of the wine and this isn't like any Cabernet Sauvignon you've had before. It's a tiny bit sweet with Jammy dark fruit notes of blackberry, black cherry, and plum. There's also a boatload of vanilla which combined with the jammy berries makes it smell like dessert.

It's a simple but really enjoyable fruity wine which is very easy to drink! 

Oh and it's only $10!

You can read more about it in my review.

6. MoonX

moonx red blend wine

This wonderfully approachable Californian wine is available at Trader Joe's for well under $10. 

It's a mix of Merlot, Zinfandel and Shiraz that goes down very easily!

Pinot Noir

A food-friendly and deliciously medium to light-bodied red, Pinot Noir is incredibly easy to fall head over heels for.

Great options for this include McMurray Ranch Pinot Noir, Tamar Ridge’s Devil’s Corner or Lindeman Bin 99.

5. Meiomi Pinot Noir 2021

Now, this is a wine that I wasn't terribly nice about in a recent review. However, my point of contention was the sweetness.

If you're not a regular wine drinker you might find this appealing and A LOT of people love this wine. It's one of the most popular wines in the US so clearly I'm in the minority.

It's a very fruity, sweeter than average Pinot Noir that someone that usually drinks cocktails or mixers might really enjoy.

4. 19 Crimes 'The Punishment' Pinot Noir

19 Crimes The Punishment Pinot Noir

This is an amazing starting point with red wine. It's a little sweeter than what you'd expect but not overly so. It remains well balanced and full-flavoured, with hints of cherry and strawberry coming through.

You can find it online at wine.com for less than $10 usually.


Usually smelling of cherries and dark berries, with a distinctive cherry taste, Lambrusco is hard not to like. 

This slightly sparkling (frizzante) Italian red wine is an amazing introduction to both red and sparkling wines.

3. Molo 8 Lambrusco Mantovano

Lambrusco Molo 8

We love the Molo 8 Lambrusco Mantovano. It's light on alcohol at just 8.5% so it's a great option for those that want a wine that doesn't taste strongly like alcohol.

It's bubbly, fruity, light and very easy to sip!

You can check the latest price here.

Sweet Wines to Try for Beginners

One of the easiest types of wine to drink is sweet wine.

To give you a little nudge in the right direction, we’ve picked out a gorgeous sweet red and an amazing sweet white wine.


Moscato is an exceptionally nice sweet white and it's very popular for good reason. 

It has a light body with a bouquet of fruity flowers and although it tastes sweet, it’s considered semi-sweet.

There are flat and semi-sparkling options, but semi-sparkling is more popular.

Another bonus (for some) is its low alcohol content. This is a great choice for those looking for a wine that doesn't overwhelm with its alcohol taste.

2. Centorri Moscato

Centorri Moscato

At just 6.5% this slightly fizzy Moscato is a really light wine, ideal for summer drinking.

Moscato is a great option for those that want a wine that tastes more like grape juice.

It's sweet and fresh with aromas of peach, apricot, and ginger. It's a really easy drinker that goes down very quickly! 

It's available online for $13.

Brachetto d’Acqui

This is a sweet red from Piedmont in Italy where it’s exclusively made. It has bright and refreshing flavors of raspberry, sweet cherry sauce and strawberry. 

1. Marenco Brachetto d'Acqui Pineto

Marenco Brachetto d'Acqui Pineto 2019

This sweet, sparkling red smells of raspberries and roses. It's the perfect summer drink that's refreshing and delicate.

At just 5.5% ABV it's another wine that's easy on the alcohol. It doesn't overwhelm with an alcohol taste.

It's an easy to drink wine that does really well in cocktails too.

Buy it now.

The Differences in Wines

Wine is so diverse there’s not really one type that’s better for beginners than others. Everyone has differing tastes and palates, after all.

There are some tasty and refreshing wines any wannabe enthusiast should try before moving onto the more serious and sophisticated sippers.

It’s important to understand there are a variety of factors affect how pleasurable beginners will find wine.

The Taste

Rather obvious this one, but still worth noting. In its simplest form, wine is essentially fancy fermented grape juice.

It’s the chosen blend of grape varieties, storage and the vintner’s personal technique that give it all the flavor notes, aroma and body that characterizes it.

Beginners are always best sticking to less complicated and simpler wines to give their taste buds a chance to familiarize themselves with the drink.

Unoaked single-varietal wines like Barbara and Pinot Grigio are perfect choices.

Couple enjoying wine tasting.


Beginners often find it easier to drink wines sweeter than many dry wines out there.

However, that doesn’t necessarily mean they want a sugar overload. They just don’t want to feel like they’ve drunk the Sahara when they take their first sip.

Wineries tend to produce a selection of wines with different levels of sweetness and this will depend on factors such as the grape varieties used, alcohol content, when they were harvested, residual sugar in the mix and whether it’s a single-varietal or a blend.

The full spectrum of sweetness takes in Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon and their dry tastes to Port and its extremely sweet taste.

For beginners, we’d recommend Moscato d’Asti as a great happy medium.

woman tasting wine


The wine world can be a deep and detailed place, if you want it to be. If you want to dive into that world, you need to learn to care about aromatics.

To become an expert, you need to understand the most subtle of differences, whereas if you just want to inform your drinking more, understanding the bare basics will be enough.

The aromatics of wine are determined by the age of the wine, where they are grown (referred to as terroir) and the grapes used.

To familiarize yourself with aromatic wines, try Grenache or Viognier.

Body and Viscosity

Mouth feel and body are terms you will hear a lot from wine buffs. This refers to how light or heavy the wine feels when it’s in your mouth. Pretty straightforward, right?

Naturally, beginners tend to favor wines that have light bodies. Some light wines to try include Sauvignon Blanc and Beaujolais Nouveau.

What was the wine that got you hooked? Got a suggestion to add to this guide? We'd love to hear from you in the comments section down below!


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About the Author Jamie

I'm Jamie (James to some), professional over-thinker and aspiring pun champion. I'm fluent in emoji, sarcasm, and song lyrics.

I'm a certified cork dork wine obsessive and wineturtle.com is my megaphone.

I have the WSET Level 2 (with distinction) in Wine and I'm currently enrolled in level 3. I've also co-written a book on wine.

I look for value in wine and I'm always on the look out for the next hidden gem.

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