Target recently released a line of $5 wines produced by California Roots at all of its stores that sell beer & wine, and I’m here to tell you all about them.
I was so excited when I heard about the new wines, but my first thought was how they would compare with Trader Joes low-priced wines. To be totally honest, I can’t stomach Trader Joe’s two buck chuck wines (not sorry about it). So as long as Target’s $5 wines are better than those, I’ll be satisfied.
There are 5 different wines in the California Roots wine line; 3 whites and 2 reds:
- Pinot Grigio
- Cabernet Sauvignon
- Red Blend
I purchased and tried all of them, so keep reading to find out if you should shell out the $5 next time you’re in need of a cheap wine.
The $5 Target White Wines
If you like really sweet wines, this one’s for you. It legit tastes like the liquid form of peach rings, so depending on your palette that could be a good or bad thing. It had a little bubbly effect to it (kinda like Vinho Verde), and it was extremely light and refreshing. I’m not a big moscato drinker, but for what it was, I’d say it’s a good value.
Smells like– Peach candy, melons, citrus
Tastes like– Peach rings, citrus
Sweetness– Very sweet
Pairs well with– Berries, vanilla ice cream, peach rings, sweet tarts
Would I buy again? Not for myself, but maybe if I knew my little brother was coming into town and wanted some alcoholic beverages on hand.
I just started to like Pinot Grigio, but this reminded me why I’d avoided it in the past. At first sniff, it smelled pretty good, and I was hopeful…after taking a sip, I was left feeling disappointed. It was hard to drink and tasted like straight alcohol (it burned my throat going down 😰).
I personally wouldn’t recommend or drink this wine again, but if you can get past the burn, more power to ya. To be honest, you’re better off spending your $5 on two sides of guac at Chipotle, a new pair of socks or a quarter of a new wine opener.
Smells like– Papaya, tropical fruits, citrus, apples
Tastes like– Alcohol, acidity, citrus fruits, tropical fruits, unpleasant aftertaste
Body– Medium light
Sweetness– Off-dry (a little sweetness)
Pairs well with– Veggie dishes, summer salads, seafood, regret
Would I buy again? Only to send to an enemy or someone I was mad at
Out of all of the white wine options, this one was my favorite. This isn’t your typical chardonnay. There are no buttery characteristics (aka malolactic fermentation 🤓), and it’s light on the oak, very crisp and pretty light in body.
This one is definitely acceptable to drink while watching your favorite TV shows, and even to bring to your next dinner party. You could easily pass this off as a $10 bottle of wine. It was easy to drink and high on the alcohol content, so prepare to get lit.
Smells like– Apples, tropical fruits, vanilla
Tastes like– Apples, vanilla, citrus fruits
Sweetness– Off-dry (tiny bit of sweetness)
Pairs well with– Mac and cheese, fettuccini alfredo, cheese board, baguette with butter
Would I buy again? Yes ma’am
The $5 Target Red Wines
I find that cheaper red wines normally taste better than cheap white wines, and this hypothesis held true for this one. The red blend was my overall favorite, and I actually had more than one glass of this over the course of a few days!
It’s fruit forward, balanced and easy to drink with soft tannins (but noticeable), making it a good choice for girls night or date night. This one could definitely pass as a $15 wine, so go ahead and add it to your list of acceptable housewarming gifts. My only complaint was that it was pretty high in alcohol content, and you can taste the alcohol. If you’re going to try any of the wines mentioned in this post, try this one!
Smells like– Cherries, strawberries, raspberries, spice
Tastes like– Cherries, berries, vanilla. spice
Sweetness– Off-dry (some sweetness, barely detectable)
Pairs well with– Cheese pizza, dark chocolate, pasta, grilled veggies
Would I buy again? YEP!
Last but not least (that would be the Pinot Grigio), we have the Cabernet Sauvignon. I tried this after tasting the red blend, and they taste similar, but this one is less fruit-forward and more tannic. It wasn’t offensive or amazing, but for $5 it’s pretty decent. The cab has a nice mouth-feel, and would go well with meat dishes and pizza!
Smells like– Dark berries, cherries, spice, vanilla, oak
Tastes like– Dark fruits, vanilla ,spice, smoke, smooth tannins
Pairs well with– Pizza, meat dishes, grilled vegetables
Would I buy again? Maybe
Overall, the red blend and the chardonnay were my favorites from the California Roots wine lineup. Compared to Trader Joe’s two buck chuck wines, Target’s $5 wines take the cake. With that said, Trader Joe’s has a lot of great options for around $5 as well.
Bravo to Target for coming out with an affordable, drinkable wine line! I’m happy to support the innovation, and look forward to seeing how the line evolves.
Have you tried Target’s $5 wines? I’m dying to know your thoughts! Let me know in the comments below.
Thank you so much for reading!