Sunday, November 1, 2015

Day 305 - Trader Joe’s Reserve Chardonnay Russian River Valley Sonoma County (2013 Lot 129 )

 I am disappointed in this wine.  It tasted better when I was standing in the store tasting it than it did when we get it home and drank it with dinner.  I think this is because the wine sample lady was pretty cool and explained to us what Trader Joe’s “Reserve” wines are.  She told us that they are somehow “fancy ass wines” (my words, not hers) that TJ’s gets ahold of a shit ton of (again, I promise she did not use this phrase in the store, this is my interpretation of how she explained it to us…) and bottles it up.  But they are not allowed to reveal the true names, see, because they are selling them for less than the hoity toity wine companies are, so they have to keep it TOP SECRET.

We are not kidding around here, this is TOP SECRET!
Now me, I love a secret.  So I played along with the whole “shhhh – it is a RESERVE!” thing.  I LIKE that part of this wine a lot.  And in the store I also liked the taste of it a lot. 

But when we drank it at home, I didn’t like the taste as much.  It wasn’t spectacular or anything.  It was alright.  It was chardonnay.  It didn’t bring anything special to the table.  The bottle says it has flavors of “tropical fruits, citrus, and baked apple” but for some reason the tropical fruit isn’t registering to my taste buds.   David says, “Unless the tropical fruit in question is durian which is famous for smelling like baby’s diarrhea…”.   (While this is a great joke, I must point out that this wine does not in any way shape or form smell like baby poop.) 

Here is what David thought:  Woody.  Sharp.  Pleasant.  Not too oaky.  I am happy to drink it and normally I hate chardonnay. 

Isn't this a nice chalkboard?  This is an example of Trader Joe's Clarendon doin' it right - lookin' great sign maker!
Overall, this wine doesn’t taste BAD.  There is just no excitement to it.  It is higher priced than many other wines at TJ’s.  We are not big chardonnay fans but we thought when we tasted this in the store it might be opening up a new variety of wine to us.  But nah.  Not so much.

Apparently it is vegan, too.  And a flyer item in October. 
Before I wrap this review up, I want to mention one other product that I PLANNED to review but am not going to now.  Kouigns Amann (caramelized Breton style layered pastries) – these were a good reminder to me to “not keep your slip in a drawer”.  That is a phrase often repeated at our house that we heard once in an NPR story.  It means, basically, LIFE IS SHORT.  Wear your nice slip.  Drink the good bottle of wine.  Cuz one day you won’t be around, and if you haven’t enjoyed it before that, well, you missed out, didn’t ya??  And that’s what happened with this product.  They looked super yummy.  I bought them.  I lost them in the freezer and found them 17 months AFTER the expiration date…  I went ahead and tried to “proof” them (letting them rise overnight) but of course they didn’t rise and I had to throw them away.  Let that be a lesson to us all – DON’T KEEP YOUR SLIP IN A DRAWER!  Dance today.  Eat tonight.  Celebrate.  And most importantly, ENJOY.

ENJOY LIFE.  For my 40th birthday one of the surprises David had up his sleeve was a HOT AIR BALLOON RIDE.  It was remarkable.  The whole experience was amazing.  It is something I had wanted to do but "never got around to it".  So what I am saying is - GET AROUND TO IT.  Life is short.  Don't keep your slip in a drawer.
Now for the price and rating of the TJ’s Reserve Chardonnay.

Price - $9.99

Rating – 3.75

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