Total Wine & More, $9.29
Aaron: This bottle is all about versatility. Great balance of oak and purple berries on the smell. The flavor is very mild and smooth making this easy drinking but still full. Lots of black fruits on the finish, rounded by some appropriate smoke. 90 points
Teri: Easy drinking, not much tannins but flavorful red fruits (black cherries and blackberries) and some oak. I recognized baking spice on the nose. It is hearty but easy drinking. I place this on the better side of ‘standard’. 87 points
Lot 18 / The Tasting Room Wine Club, $22
Vivino Website Rating
Aaron: I was really happy with this bottle. The nose starts out as a brushfire with dried bushes and raspberry vanilla in the background. The fruity velvet flavor is pleasant but the super smooth finish with a hint of pepper won me over. There’s lots of chocolate and black fruit lingering on the palate; enjoy. 91 points
Teri: The Needle Cab has a juicy red fruit nose with flavors of oaky black cherry, rhubarb, and other dark fruits. I also identified a bit of dried herb (maybe parsley) on both the nose and the finish. This wine is smooth and easy to drink but hearty. Aaron and I enjoyed this with steak and it paired perfectly. 90 points
Purchased from Genoa Cellars Tasting Room in Woodinville, WA, $35
Aaron: I really enjoyed this. There’s a powerful smell of damp berries and leather. The full flavor matches the strength of the nose with lingering tannins. Lots of oak and big juicy red berries dance with a hint of mushroom in the background making this a fun journey. 91 points.
Teri: Warm and spicy oak on the nose with flavors of plum, sweet oak (on the finish), vanilla and tart cherry. There are noticeable tannins but they give good structure to the wine. Complex and hearty. 90 points. Overall, I enjoyed most of the wines from this winery. We will go back!
World Market, $9.99
Aaron: Rocky minerals and sea salt combine with dark plum. The flavor is pretty rich with hearty tannins and a slow burn finish. Tobacco and black fruits cloud the tongue with some porace texture at the end. 89 points
Teri: The first thing I noticed was the hearty tannins in this bottle. A nose of baking spice and fruit is followed by oaky/leader blueberries and baking spice. Less fruit overall and more rose pedals, earth and oaky flavors. Not overly complex but the finish is smooth and lingering. This is an ok bottle for the price. I wouldn’t pay more than $10. Overall ok, but I think there are better options. 87 points
Purchased from Trader Joes, $12.99
Aaron: For a Trader Joe’s branded wine I really can’t complain. Good flavor as a stand alone bottle with some decent spice and berries. This is a solid bottle. 89 points
Teri: I could smell mushroom and herb on the nose with flavors of vanilla, blackberry, dried fruits and oak within the wine itself. This bottle had smooth tannins with a hearty flavor and an easy drinking feel. This is a good go-to bottle for any occasion. 89 points