Green Fin 2010 California Red Table Wine from Trader Joe’s

To follow on the heels of the Green Fin 2010 White Wine, we bought both on a lark and tasted the Red Wine the next night. Like I’ve mentioned, I’m very knowledgeable about wine and am used to drinking lots of higher priced stuff (As they say I’m ITB). We were kind of shocked at how drinkable the white Green Fin was and have bought a couple of extra bottles to have as a week night drink.

Having tasted thousands of wines over the years, I have found over the years that lower priced whites do better in general than low priced red in the QPR (Quality Price Ratio). It’s much harder to manipulate the flavors in red wines and it shows in this Green Fin Red Table wine. The 2010 Green Fin red wine is simply, simple. That’s it. There isn’t much there. It vaguely tastes like red wine. Very soft and sweet. Light colored and low alcohol. It’s just too sweet for my tastes and I like bone dry red wines. No varietal flavors, and not that I would expect any at this price point. I didn’t have any expectations about this wine being as good as it’s white brethren and it live up to my expectations! About the only think going for it is that it’s made from Organic grapes

I don’t think I would ever by this wine again and I score it 4 Bells. (I would give it a Parker score of about 60)

Thai Vegetable Kao Soi with Crispy Noodles

This is a new item with the October 2011 Fearless Flyer. I’m always skeptical about these Asian dishes, but sometimes I am surprised at how good they are. This is not one of those times. Here is a link to the dish at the TJs website:

Let me back up and say here in our little hamlet of about 9000 people, we have at least 3 Thai, 4 Chinese, 4 Sushi, 2 Japanese, 1 Mongolian grill, 2 Pho, 3 Indian restaurants. I’ve been eating Thai food since I lived there in 1968 so I am a pretty tough critic of Asian foods.

This is a soup but it comes in a rectangular tray that you can either heat in the microwave or there is also instructions for the oven(?). I opted for the microwave because I thought baking noodle soup in the oven was kinda crazy. Probably an even better way to cook it would be to take it out of the box and put it in a pot and bring to a boil.

It smelled really good when I brought it out of the microwave, lots of curry aromas! Then you sprinkle the crispy noodles on top of the for texture and they tasted pretty good before I put them on. Would make a great snack on their own.

The broth and the noodles were actually quite good and the soup part was hot but not over the top. Nice Thai curry flavors and pretty good depth of flavor. The big disappointment was the vegetables. They were mushy! Not just a little mushy, but super mushy. Kind of put me off the whole thing…

OK, would I buy this again? Probably not. Traders has plenty of much better soups out there. The price was pretty good at $2.99 but that did not overcome the super mushy vegetables. I applaud TJs for continuing to introduce semi-exotic foods to the general public, and with a few tweaks on their end this would be a great dish. I’m giving it 6 Bells.

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