Home > Daily Glass, wine > Daily Glass: Experiencing Trader Joe’s Wines

Daily Glass: Experiencing Trader Joe’s Wines

October 20, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

When it comes to Trader Joe’s stores, I’m a big fun – I think that everything sold there has good quality and fairly priced (in our wine terms, has good QPR).

I also heard that some of the Trader Joe’s stores also sell wine. Living in Connecticut, the most you can find in supermarket or a food store is beer (wine is sold only at the liquor stores). While visiting friends in Brookline in Massachusetts, I suddenly realized that Trader Joe’s is literally across the street from their house – and it might be selling wine!

Guess what? Yep, it does. The store itself was bigger than any Trader Joe’s I’ve being to before, but besides that, wine section was  – Wow! Looking at the prices – double wow! Lots of wines at $4.99 ( outside of Trader Joe’s line called Charles Shaw, which is priced at $2.99), and overall, very substantial selection. Yes, I had before wines which were good and very inexpensive (same price range), but in general it is hit and miss.

Next I saw… 2 different Amarone at $16.99 and $18.99, a Barbaresco at $12.99 and Barolo for $16.99. Yes, you got it right – I got all of those except Barolo, and of course, tasting notes will be coming.

Let’s start from the basics – let me share my thoughts on Charles Shaw wines. First I tried 2010 Charles Shaw Cabernet Sauvignon. It was quite drinkable, however resembling more Beaujolais Nouveau,  with its fresh fruit grapey taste. It was easy to drink, lighter bodied wine. Interestingly enough, on the second day this wine became very sweet and went beyond my style of enjoyment. Was it a great wine? No. Was it a good wine which you can drink occasionally – yes. Was it a great wine considering QPR, with the price of $2.99? Absolutely. Drinkability: 6+.

The next day I opened a bottle of 2009 Charles Shaw Chardonnay. The wine was very nice, had good amount of white fruit, some tropical fruit – but not overly fruity, with good acidity in the back. This was a good Chardonnay, with or without QPR. On the next day, wine developed some kind of chemical aftertaste, which disappeared as wine warmed up a bit, but overall it lost some of the brightness which was well exhibited on the first day.Drinkability: 7-.

To give you a bottom line, I think both wines were quite drinkable, and Chardonnay was more or less varietally correct (Cabernet was not so much). Would I want to drink these wines every day – not really, but occasionally – no problems at all. Do these wines have great QPR? You bet.  Should you try one – absolutely. This is your call for action for tonight – find a Trader Joe’s store which sells wine, get a few different bottles of Charles Shaw wines, try them and report back here. Meanwhile, I’m all ready for my Amarone, so I need to go now. Cheers!


  1. Emil
    October 20, 2011 at 9:47 am

    Who’s up for a trip to MA? 🙂
    NY, NJ, CT liquor laws are so f’ing dumb…. oh well…
    Looking forward to reviews of the other bottles.

    • talkavino
      October 20, 2011 at 11:33 am

      If you think about it, it is not that far, though. It will only take about 2.5 hours to get there 🙂
      The updates will be coming, of course. I’m planning to open one of the Amarone bottles tonight.

  2. November 9, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    i guess here in San Diego, CA we’re even luckier…Trader Joe’s here sells their Charles Shaw at $1.99. 🙂 CHEERS!

    • talkavino
      November 9, 2011 at 9:52 pm


      thanks for the comment! I guess there are some other advantages to the California living besides warm weather 🙂

  1. October 22, 2011 at 12:17 am
  2. April 18, 2012 at 8:19 pm
  3. September 18, 2012 at 10:17 pm

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