The Wine Idiot Reviews: Trader Joe's Block 67 Cabernet Sauvignon, Boxed ($11.99)
OK, brace yourself. Remember when I reviewed Trader Joe's boxed red wine offering, the Block 67 Shiraz? And my tasting buddies really didn't like it, but I didn't mind it so much, and I suspected that's because I had been the one who paid for it? TRADER JOE DONE MADE A BETTER VERSION!
Introducing the cabernet sauvignon version of the Block 67 box o' wine!!!!! Same great deal (four bottles of vacuum-sealed vino that will last over a month after the spigot-seal has been breached), but now with better wine!
I mean, I'mma get real with you right now...this isn't miracle wine. Nothing that costs less than $3 a bottle is gonna be excellent. But this is drinkable. I like it MUCH better than the Shiraz version. And the best part is you can get a box of this just to have on hand for those evenings when it wouldn't make sense to open an entirely new bottle, but boy howdy could you go for a glass of wine. It's also great for when you've offered to bring wine to a casual gathering but you don't want to break the bank.
It smells sweet and fruity, but it doesn't taste as sweet as it smells. It actually reminds me quite a lot of the Chariot Gypsy Red I tried recently--it's not mindblowing, it's just inoffensive red wine. Unlike the Chariot, it does have a tiny bit of sourness in the finish, but it's not bad enough to stop me from drinking it. I wrote in my notes, "a little flat but tasty." And then there's a wine stain on the paper. I got sloppy, apparently.
I tried it with the spaghetti and meatballs I made for dinner and I did NOT enjoy it (interestingly, I tried the boxed Shiraz with meatballs and DID enjoy it--apparently I eat meatballs a lot). This is more of a sittin'-on-the-couch-drinking-and-watching-Rachel-Maddow wine. Compared to the boxed Shiraz, this wins hands-down. Next time I'm at TJ's, I'll buy a bottle of good ol' Charles Shaw Cabernet Sauvignon and see how this compares to the only wine that's cheaper.
UPDATE: I tasted all the Charles Shaw wines. I don't recommend doing that, and I also recommend this box over the Two Buck Chuck cab. I guess it could be the same damn wine? Maybe trying seven dirt-cheap wines in a row put me in a bad mood, so I was less inclined to be generous to the cab. But I'm gonna trust my gut and my tastebuds here--I finished the entire box of Block 67 Cabernet Sauvignon, and I couldn't bring myself to finish the bottle of Charles Shaw Cabernet Sauvignon, and that's probably all you really need to know.
What the bottle (box) says: "Tasting notes: Black cherry, and plum aromas coupled with flavors of red currant on the palate followed by notes of cedar and cocoa."
What the Wine Idiot says: Yeahhh, I think the writer got a little creative here. I obviously am not the most discerning wine-taster, but I feel like someone just made up "cedar and cocoa." But if that's what you want to taste when you sip this? Sure, why not. It's probably not wildly off the mark.
Who's responsible for this? "Vinted & Bottled by: ASV Wines, McFarland, CA"
Do I need a corkscrew? No, you just need to be able to follow the directions on the bottom of the box to release the spigot (IT'S NOT THAT EASY, WHY DO YOU THINK THERE ARE WINE STAINS ALL OVER MY TASTING NOTES).
What do smarter people say about it? Well I couldn't find ANY reviews of it, so here's the lowdown from the Fearless Flyer: "Cabernet Sauvignon is blended with some additional California varietals to create a bold, medium-bodied red. It opens up with aromas of blackberry and black cherry, and brings notes of toasted vanilla to your palate. It finishes with soft, elegant tannins."