Archive for the ‘Wine’ Category

Casone Toscana IGT – 2010 – Wine Review – Trader Joe’s

08/11/2017

trader joe, casone, toscana, 2010, review, wine, price, IGTAugust 11, 2017
I was especially excited to see this on the TJ selves. It’s a 2010 IGT wine from Tuscany.  It’s not normal to see a 7-year-old wine at TJ, especially at this price.  Just the added storage costs alone is reason to charge more for a wine that’s been around an extra few years.

While the Italian wine classification is not supposed to be a reflection of the quality of the wines, in my experience the better the classification, the better the wine. The IGT classification is a lower classification, more specifically one that is usually broader in scope as to the grapes and methods used to produce the wine.

Now in my limited and personal experience with Tuscan wines, the IGT wines are edgier and less refined than the higher classified (more restrictive) DOC and DOCG wines.  I’m sure there are some exceptions to that experience.  And those exceptions likely command a higher price than the wines I usually review.

My question in picking up this wine is, how does aging affect an IGT red wine?  In theory a red wine improves with age up until a point where too much age negatively affects the wine. Most of us personally know how that too much age thing works with people.  The rest of us will find out.

While I didn’t review this particular wine back when it was 2 or 3 years old, compared to similar IGT wines from the era that I have tried, this is a big step up.  This wine has smoothed over the IGT rough edges leaving a very nice, really smooth, mellow, nothing bad, or even close to bad, fine Tuscan red wine. And an absolute bargain. I hope there’s still some left on the shelf.  Price:  $10.99

Bogle Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 – Wine Review – Trader Joe’s

07/26/2017

trader joe, review, price, Bogle cabernet sauvignon, 2014, CaloforniaJuly 26, 2017

The wine has a mild earthy and mildly strong aroma in the glass.  The wine feels slightly dry in the mouth and is not fruity to the taste.  It’s a little different flavor profile than experienced in the past from a California Cab, but still of the same genre.  The second glass and thereafter has more of a California Cab experience.  There’s nothing odd or off tasting. While mildly strong as a wine, the wine is also smooth to drink.   This is a fairly good California Cab for people who might want to expand their tastes in that direction or for people who just want to chill after a hard day’s work without challenging themselves too much.  The wine works well as a sipper.  It didn’t pair well with some cheddar cheese.  It paired much better with some mildly spicy Indian food, and some not so spicy Chinese garlic chicken.  It was a matter of having enough food in the mouth to stand up to the wine.

The wine seems to be generally available at other outlets for a similar price, sometimes even a little less and sometimes a little more.  The wine receives average to slightly above average reviews by others.  Price $8.99.

Amancay – Torrontés – Reserva 2014 – Wine Review – Trader Joe’s

06/20/2017

Trader Joe's, white wine, review, price, amancay, torrontes, 2014June 20, 2017

This is the first item I’ve ever seen marked down at Trader Joe’s.  But that’s not why I picked it up.  I picked it up because an Amancay red I had a few weeks ago was an okay and interesting wine.  This purchase didn’t fare as well.

The wine has a clear pale yellow color.  There’s a brief fruity aroma on first opening which soon disappears.  In the mouth the wine is earthy and tart with something of the taste of concentrated unripe green grapes.  The wine worked surprisingly well with an anchovy pizza. The wine balanced the strong tastes from the pizza, especially the saltiness from the anchovy.  The pizza balanced out the acidity from the wine.

This is not a white wine for me.  It’s too harsh. The wine is better with food than by itself, especially stronger tasting foods. Chilling helps the wine some.  A few days in the refrigerator sealed after opening seemed to help the wine mellow some.  Balancing out the negatives is the very low price (marked down).   Price $3.99.

Chateau Poyanne – Bordeaux 2015 – Wine Review – Trader Joe’s

05/12/2017

trader joe, review, price, wine, bordeaux, chateau poyanne, 2015May 12, 2017

There’s a very nice, strong aroma coming from the glass on first​ pour which portends a full-bodied wine.  The wine is fruity and dry at the same time in the mouth.  There are no real negatives.  Although for the very critical among us, there are hints of things to complain about.  This is a blend of mostly Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, according to the internet.

Generally this wine is a love or hate affair when reviewed on the web.  About 2/3 of reviewers like this and think it’s a great value wine.  The 1/3 of reviews which hate this may be due to some “bad” bottles. Although my guess is those bad reviews are prompted by personal preferences. Most of the reviews were for earlier vintages.  There were very few 2015 vintage reviews.

While this is not a great wine, and would anyone really expect a great wine at this price, if you’re not afraid to challenge yourself by adding some complexity to a wine, this is an inexpensive way to do that.  And you just might like it.  I did.  Price $5.99.

Sayanca Malbec 2016 – Argentina – Wine Review – ALDI

04/23/2017

sayanca, malbec, wine, Argentina, ALDI, 2016, review, priceApril 23, 2017

A fruity aroma escaped the bottle on first opening which quickly disappeared for good. This is a mildly dry and earthy Malbec from Argentina similar to the other two Malbecs (Gestos, Amancay)  recently reviewed.  Red wines generally need a few years to reach their peaks.  As a 2016 vintage, this is a red wine which has most likely not peaked.  But as a $5 wine, does anyone much care?

For me, this is an everyday table wine meant to be consumed with food.  The wine has a fairly strong flavor profile making paring with; red meats, strong cheeses, hearty sauces and of course pizza, obvious choices.  A burrito Jalisco and Jimmy John’s #5 worked well for me on separate days.

Alone, this is still a drinkable wine with sometimes a bit of a bad aftertaste that may make one wish they had spent another dollar or two for a better wine.  But still, this is not bad for the price and I’ve easily had worse.  Price $4.99

 

 

Gestos – Malbec+Malbec – 2014 – Wine Review – Trader Joe’s

04/09/2017

Trader Joe, Argentina, Gestos Malbec+Malbec, review, price, red wine, 2014April 9, 2017

The gimmick for this wine is the grapes grown at two different altitudes.  That’s how it gets its name and label.  The wine consists of 50% grapes grown at 1100 meters and 50% grapes grown at 700 meters.  The idea is that each altitude (and environment) adds different characteristics to the grapes and ultimately the wine.  And how does that work?

This wine is very similar to the Amancay Malbec reviewed last week.  Both come from the Mendoza region of Argentina.  The aroma is strong and earthy in the glass.  The wine is dry and earthy in the mouth.  The color is deep purple.  There may be a bit more body and a bit less dryness than the Amancay.  This would be a more interesting wine than the Amancay if not for a somewhat harsh aftertaste.  Price $8.99.

Amancay – Malbec – Reserva 2014 – Wine Review – Trader Joe’s

03/31/2017

March 31, 2017

This Malbec from the Uco Valley of Argentina has a deep purple color in the glass with a mild fruity aroma.  On the first glass there’s a bit of alcohol burn in the nose and the back of the throat.  In the mouth there’s a dry watery feel.  The dryness is not overpowering, but definitely there on the roof of the mouth.  For those who don’t mind a dry red wine, this is a reasonably good wine for the price.  The simple but elegant label is a bonus.  Price $6.99.

Terrenal Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 – Wine Review – Trader Joe’s

03/27/2017
March 27, 2017

This Cab hails from Yecla, Spain.  Briefly it’s an earthy, strong Cab that’s not very smooth bordering on rough.  Along with the earthy mouth feel is a little heat on the tongue and back of the throat.  Although I haven’t had any recently, this reminds me of a good two buck Chuck.  In the glass the wine is a watery medium-dark red.  This wine can easily overpower some foods.  Other than the style, which some people may not like, there aren’t really any overpowering negatives.  This is drinkable and not bad for a $5 wine as long as you like your wine and women (or men) strong and rough.  One final thing, the wine is labeled as Kosher.  Price $4.99.

Borelli Nero D’Avola IGT NV – Wine Review – ALDI

03/11/2017

March 11, 2017

A medium red color yields a slight earthy aroma in the glass.  After that, there’s not much else.  In the mouth there’s a little alcohol burn and a hint of cherry.  There may be a stray tannin or two which accounts for the earthy taste and mouth feel.   There’s nothing bad or offensive in the taste.  This is a simple $5 wine.  The price sets the expectation for what’s in the bottle.   It’s entirely drinkable, but probably best with food as there’s not much to savor by itself.  While there’s nothing special about this wine, at the same time it’s still equal or better than some $10 wines at mass merchandisers.   Price $4.99

 

 

Chateau Haut-Sorillon Bordeaux Superieur – 2013 – Wine Review – Trader Joe’s

02/23/2017

Trader Joe, wine, Haut-Sorillon, Bordeaux Superieur, 2013, review, priceFebruary 23, 2017

There’s not much on the cork.  In the glass there’s a deep red to purple color and not much aroma.  This is a medium-light bodied simple red wine that tastes good and is easy to drink.  There are a few tannins around to give the wine a little character, but not enough to upset very many people.  There are no negatives.

There’s little information on the bottle or the internet about the grapes or process used to make this wine.  Since it’s a Bordeaux, we can assume most of the grapes used in this wine are Cabernet and Merlot.  Most other reviews on the web give this average ratings (3.5 out of 5).  It’s a fairly mild red wine and should pair well with most foods except the most delicate.  I could sip this all night – regrets in the morning of course.  Price $8.99.


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