Know what pairs well with wine? Country music.
Whether you prefer strawberry wine or muscadine wine, just a glass or the whole dang bottle, there's a country song that fits your taste. Country songs about wine aren't as wild as those about whiskey or tequila, nor as common as songs about beer, but they still take up plenty of space in the genre.
Kick back, pour yourself a glass and enjoy The Boot's list of the Top 10 country songs about wine:
No good list of wine-focused songs is complete without one about homemade vino. In this case, it’s a story about winning a girl over with homemade wine, and a reflection on how time and age don’t have to diminish good things. As the narrator says, “There might be a little dust on the bottle / But don’t let that fool you about what’s inside / There might be a little dust on the bottle / It’s one of those things that get sweeter with time.”
There are plenty of good country songs about whiskey, but in “Good With Wine,” Paslay has said goodbye to Jack Daniel's in favor of a glass of wine. “I used to drink my whiskey careless, fast and dark,” he explains, but now, he wants to “slow it down” and “pour a glass of what’s been waitin’ all along, baby.” Spoiler alert: He’s not only singing about alcohol preferences, he’s also talking about love! "Good With Wine" is a romantic song that could convince just about anyone to put down the whiskey and pick up a Cabernet … even if it’s just for one night.
Shelton’s romantic “Sangria” was a No. 1 hit, and there’s probably a reason: He's described it as “one of the sexiest songs I’ve ever cut.” Take one listen, and you’ll likely agree. The song centers around one lasting image: “You take my hand, you lean in, and / Your lips taste like sangria.” There’s plenty to like about it as a love song, but we personally are fans of a wine song that ups its specificity game. We’ve got plenty of songs about plain old wine, but a song about the fruity, Spanish wine concoction that is sangria? That’s a little rarer.
“Yesterday’s Wine” is about the staying power of old friendships, so who better to sing it than old friends Jones and Merle Haggard? The duo’s performance of this Willie Nelson original was a No. 1 hit, and it’s not hard to hear why: The song goes down smooth and easy, just like a glass of good wine. It’s two of country’s great voices harmonizing with ease about relationships that are getting better with age, just like “yesterday’s wine.” What’s not to like?
“Two More Bottles of Wine” is powered by two things: a pounding honky-tonk piano and a love for wine. Harris sings about the pitfalls and hardships that come with moving out west to follow your dreams, but again and again concludes, “It’s alright ‘cause it’s midnight and I got two more bottles of wine.” It’s a cheerful song, despite the fact that, by the end, the narrator has been abandoned by her boyfriend and has a job sweeping a warehouse. Still, she sounds remarkably upbeat, leaving us to conclude only one thing: They must be really good bottles of wine.
Country songs about wine tend to be on the slower side: contemplative, bittersweet and often romantic. But most country songs about wine aren’t “Smoke and Wine." This one is absolutely wild, opening with the declaration, “I’m just a hillbilly hell-raiser,” set to a backdrop of breakneck finger picking, and speeding off from there. The crazy, high-energy tune comes back to this declaration over and over: “If I think I’m gonna have a bad time / I got a little bit of smoke and a whole lotta wine.”
In “Cigarettes and Wine,” it’s the scent of the two to which Isbell keeps coming back. He’s remembering a bartender he met at a time when “money and liquor and lust had taken my heart and my trust.” It’s a beautiful, slow-building song that always returns to one line: “She smelled like cigarettes and wine / And she kept me happy all the time.” Sometimes, the loveliest memories are the simplest ones. This song proves it.
Pearce’s “Hide the Wine” is the newest song on this list (it was released as a single in 2017), but it’s already solidified its place as one of the great country wine songs. It’s about what happens when the narrator’s old flame is back in town (and how impossible it seems to be to avoid him): “Turn up the lights and kill the mood,” Pearce sings. “Because, baby, I don’t trust myself with you / Better hide the wine.” Is it even technically a drinking song if most of the lyrics are about trying to hide the wine? With a song this catchy, we don’t really care.
There’s something hypnotically peaceful about Cash’s 1972 song “Melva’s Wine.” It’s a tune that creates an entire world in just a few minutes, a song about friendship and brothers and love and death and traditions and, most of all, a woman named Melva and the wine that she makes every year. The song slowly winds down to close with an image of the narrator drinking the last glass of wine that Melva ever made. It’s a bittersweet image, but that’s what makes it such a memorable song.
Carter’s “Strawberry Wine” just might be the best-known country wine song out there. All about young love, nostalgia and (of course) strawberry wine, the song’s winsome lyrics are just as much about memory as they are about drinking. “Strawberry Wine” was Carter’s debut single in 1996, and there’s no way she could have anticipated how big the song would become: No. 1 on the charts, nominated for Grammys and voted Song of the Year by the Nashville Songwriters Association International (to name a few). All for a song that is, at its essence, summed up as such: “My first taste of love was bittersweet / And green on the vine / Like strawberry wine.”