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2019 Trader Joe’s Old Moon Old Zinfandel – Review

Old Moon Zinfandel got you curious? It’s no ordinary wine! This fruity, spicy Californian gem is your gateway to bold Zinfandel fun. Forget boring stereotypes – dive into juicy reds like Old Moon or explore sweet & refreshing whites. Ready to unlock the secrets? Food pairings, sweetness levels, and more inside! Buckle up, it’s gonna be delicious!

Exact Wine Name: 2019 Trader Joe’s Old Moon Old Vine Zinfandel
Producer: Trader Joe’s (Produced by The Wine Group)
Country/Region of Origin: California, USA
Grape Varietal(s): Zinfandel (Primarily Primitivo clone)
Type: Red Wine
Style: Full-bodied and fruit-forward with bold flavors of black cherry, plum, and spice.
Vintage Year: 2019
Price Range: $7-$10 USD
ABV: 14.5%
Aroma Profile Details: Ripe black cherry, plum, blackberry, pepper, spice, and hints of oak.
Flavor Profile Details: Full-bodied and juicy with bold flavors of black cherry, plum, blackberry, and spice. Hints of vanilla and oak from aging in barrels.
Peak Drinking Window: 2021-2026 (although it can be enjoyable for a few years after that)

Testing Notes

Popped open a bottle of the Trader Joe’s Old Moon Zinfandel 2019 last night, and let me tell you, it was a crowd-pleaser! Right off the bat, the aroma hit me with juicy black cherry and plum, with a hint of peppery spice that tickled my nose. The first sip was smooth and full-bodied, bursting with those same dark fruit flavors, along with a touch of blackberry and maybe even a hint of vanilla (thanks to some oak aging, I’m guessing?). It wasn’t shy on alcohol, clocking in at 14.5%, but it felt balanced and didn’t overpower the fruitiness.

We paired it with grilled burgers and veggies, and it was a match made in heaven. The wine cut through the richness of the burgers without being too heavy, and the smoky notes from the grill complemented the peppery spice in the wine beautifully. It wasn’t the most complex Zinfandel I’ve ever had, but for the price tag, it was seriously impressive. Easy-drinking, crowd-pleasing, and packed with flavor – can’t ask for much more on a casual weeknight!

Food Pairings for the Trader Joe’s Old Moon Zinfandel 2019

This full-bodied and fruit-forward Zinfandel craves bold flavors that can stand up to its personality. From smoky BBQ to vibrant pasta dishes, let’s explore where this wine truly shines:

Grill Masters, Rejoice!

4.0
The 2019 Trader Joe's Old Moon Old Vine Zinfandel is a good value for the price and a great option for casual drinking. It is full-bodied and flavorful, but not complex. It pairs well with grilled meats, BBQ, and other hearty dishes. If you are looking for an affordable and easy-drinking Zinfandel, this is a good choice.

Positives

  • Affordable price
  • Full-bodied and flavorful
  • Good value for the price
  • Easy to drink

Negatives

  • Not a complex wine
  • Can be high in alcohol
  • Not suitable for all food pairings

Breakdown

  • Drinkability 4.0/5
  • Food Pairing 3.5/5
  • Value for Money 4.5/5
  • Personal Preference 4.0/5

Fire up the flavors: Burgers, BBQ ribs, and steaks find a perfect match in the Zinfandel’s boldness. The wine’s fruitiness dances with the char of grilled meats, while the peppery spice complements smoky BBQ sauces.

Vegetarian twist: Portobello mushroom burgers or lentil stews offer delicious alternatives, letting the earthiness balance the fruitiness beautifully.

Pasta Paradise:

Tomato tango: Red sauce classics like spaghetti marinara and spicy sausage ragu become a flavor fiesta with this Zinfandel. The acidity in the sauce cuts through the wine’s richness, creating a delightful harmony.

Creamy complexity: Don’t shy away from bolder options like pesto or creamy tomato sauce. Their layers of flavor will keep the Zinfandel on its toes, making for a truly memorable culinary experience.

Cheeseboard Bonanza:

Aged and bold: Sharp cheddar, parmesan, and pecorino cheeses become the perfect companions to this Zinfandel. Their saltiness cuts through the fruitiness, creating a satisfying savory counterpoint.

Avoidance is key:

Delicate dance: This Zinfandel’s intensity might overpower delicate seafood like scallops or sushi. Opt for lighter wines to pair with these subtle flavors.

Light and lovely: Skip the pairing with light salads as the wine’s weight might overpower the delicate greens.

Uncork for These Occasions:

Casual dinners: Let the wine be the conversation starter, bringing laughter and joy to the table.

Game nights: Add some friendly competition and delicious flavors to the mix.

Backyard barbecues: This Zinfandel is the perfect complement to your summer cookout, adding vibrancy to every bite.

Remember: These are just suggestions! Experiment and find the food pairings that bring YOU the most joy. After all, the best food pairing is the one that puts a smile on your face and keeps you coming back for more. Cheers!

Zinfandel FAQs: Unraveling the Mystery

Zinfandel is a popular grape variety that produces a diverse range of wines, sparking many questions along the way. Let’s dive into some of the most frequently asked ones:

Is Zinfandel a cheap wine?

Not always! The price of Zinfandel varies greatly depending on the producer, region, and style. You can find affordable options, particularly White Zinfandel, but premium Zinfandels with complex aging can reach higher price points. It all depends on what you’re looking for in a Zinfandel experience.

Is Zinfandel a strong wine?

It can be! Zinfandel generally has higher alcohol content than many other red wines, typically ranging from 13.5% to 15.5%. However, there are exceptions, with some lighter styles clocking in lower. Pay attention to the alcohol content listed on the bottle to get a sense of what you’re getting.

Is Zinfandel a sweet wine?

It depends! Most Zinfandels are actually dry red wines, characterized by bold fruit flavors, pepper spice, and tannins. However, White Zinfandel is a different story. This sweeter, blush-colored wine is made from the same grape but vinified differently, resulting in a lower alcohol content and prominent sweetness.

Why is White Zinfandel so cheap?

Several factors contribute to the lower price of White Zinfandel. Firstly, the production process is generally simpler and uses less expensive techniques. Additionally, many White Zinfandels come from high-yielding vineyards, lowering the production cost per bottle. Finally, consumer preference for sweeter wines often leads to higher demand for dryer, more complex Zinfandels, impacting pricing.

Is White Zinfandel alcoholic?

White Zinfandel generally has a lower alcohol content than red Zinfandel, typically ranging from 9% to 12%. This contributes to its lighter, sweeter style and makes it a popular choice for those who prefer lower-alcohol wines.

The Final Toast: Uncorking the Magic of Zinfandel

From smoky BBQ pairings to vibrant pasta dances, Zinfandel has proven its versatility and ability to elevate your culinary adventures. Remember, the wine world is all about exploration and individual preferences. So, experiment, have fun, and don’t be afraid to break the rules. Cheers to finding your perfect Zinfandel match and creating delicious memories in the process!

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