Drinking Tonight: Trader Joe’s Reserve Chilean and Chateau Haut Blaignan

I’ve got a bacon-wrapped tenderloin and some mushroom-onion sauce cooking, I thought I’d compare these two bottles I picked up last week.

The Reserve Chilean is 60% Cabernet Franc (one of my favorite grapes) and 40% Petit Verdot (which you rarely see in Chile) from the Colchagua Valley.  Haut Blaignan is from the Medoc, so it’s going to be Cabernet Sauvignon dominated.  Let’s see how these stack up head to head.

Chateau Haut Blaignan 2011

Color: garnet red, full from center to edge.

Aroma: spicy and cedary, with red cherry and some berry fruit.

Taste: decent balance, but a little hot.  I think it needs a year or two. A straightforward Bordeaux but nothing exceptional.


Trader Joe’s Reserve Chilean 2010

Color: Purplish-red, you can see the Petit Verdot in this.

Aroma: Classic Cab Franc – pepper, leather, cedar, purple fruit.  This is promising.

Taste: A good blend – blackberry, pepper, and a good lashing of oak & tannin on the finish.  A pretty good bottle for $10.


Overall the Chilean is a better bottle.  I think the Bordeaux might be better with lamb.


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