The 2011 J W Morris Gewurztraminer is a $3.99 Trader Joe’s exclusive. J W Morris is one of Bronco Wines (2 Buck Chuck) multitude of wine labels. Bronco Wines is very focused on keeping production costs down so there is rarely any promotional material available on the making of their wines. I will say this about Trader Joe’s, they routinely get people who have never heard of any wine grapes other than Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon to drink wines made from less well known or regional grapes. You hear people complain that there are better wines made from the same grape available at the local mainstream wine shop, but that is beside the point (and in many cases, very debatable). There is a whole generation of wine drinkers that have been turned on to wines made from a wide variety of grapes made in the whole spectrum of winemaking countries by Trader Joe’s and these are people that the mainstream wine sellers never found an effective way to influence. This Gewurztraminer was sourced from more than one California grape growing AVA and the alcohol content is 12.5%.
The color is very pale lite beer yellow with a slight amber tint. The nose is pink lemonade, pineapple juice and tart rock candy, it is a pretty aroma, it reminds me of the spring day. This is a light bodied wine with a slightly oily mouthfeel. It is a touch on the sweet side, but not cloyingly so. The flavors are light and delicate, canned pears in light syrup, fresh peach, lime juice, lemon chiffon, sour gummi candy and a faint mineral edge at the end. No real mid palate or transition, what you get up front is all there is, but the flavors up front are pleasing. The sweet and the sour mix well and there is a decent amount of relatively balanced acidity running thru the body of the wine. The finish is light but manages to linger for a while.
The J Morris Gewurztraminer is a terrific back porch or party wine. Serve it well chilled, there are no off flavors, it tends toward the sweet side of things, but the sour flavors balance out the sweet flavors. This isn’t a food wine, unless you are having very spicy food and need something to put the fire out. This is a balcony on a hot simmer night wine or an open up a few bottles when friends stop by (at 4 bucks a bottle, $20 bucks buys you a party) kind of wine. A few years back, I dreaded drinking under $5 wine, you just never knew what you were going to get, but in the last couple of years very inexpensive wine has become downright competent.