Wine of the Week: Cherry Blossom Pinot Noir

Wine of the Week: Cherry Blossom Pinot Noir

When I went to Trader Joe’s to peruse their “affordable” wines (as recommended by an AWESOME wine-loving friend), I found myself running through the aisle like a kid in a candy store, picking up bottles left and right. Ten minutes into it, I had a cart full of wine topped with one toddler. I wonder what people were thinking of me, because despite all the wine bottles and the toddler, the fact that it was still morning may have left some people with questions…

I bought 18 bottles that day, and I am down to 6. Don’t judge me… yet! In my defense, that was a little over two weeks ago and we had a party in between, so… Well, that sounded better in my head, but looking at it on my screen sounds scary. I guess 12 bottles is a lot to go through in 2 weeks. You’d think I’d have 12 Wine of the Week posts to go with that, wouldn’t you? But I don’t. I guess I’ve just been lazy, but now you know why I felt it necessary to detox. Hahaha… On to the review…

In this 14th Edition of Wine and Lavender’s Wine of the Week, we’ll be exploring…

Cherry Blossom Pinot Noir

Cherry Blossom Pinot Noir 2014

Trader Joe’s Price: $3.99

Sight:   SCREW TOP! How in the world did I miss that?! You know how I feel about screw tops, I’ve told you here and here. It never seems to work out for me, but there’s always that small chance… and I already bought it, so I had to give it a try. As far as the wine, itself- it’s a very deep red. It’s quite “mysterious” looking, dark, and “deep”. In all honesty, that’s kind of off-putting. I like my wine to be bright and a little on the darker side of red, but not this dark.

Cherry Blossom Pinot NoirSmell: “Gasoline and permanent marker” is how my husband described it. I hadn’t even taken a sniff yet, and that was the idea he planted in my head. So I’m going into this tasting with the words: dark, mysterious, gasoline, and permanent marker. Hmm. So I took a sniff- and this wine is so STRONG- smelling! It’s definitely one of the strongest wines I’ve ever smelled, but the interesting part is that the smell doesn’t linger in your nostrils, or make it’s way down your throat. So that’s something positive about this mysterious wine.

Taste/First Impression:  So my first sip could best be described as…. licorice. Very strong licorice, and this upsets me because I hate licorice. It was always the candy at the very bottom of the halloween bounty that signified the end of the candy feast. When licorice and Good & Plentys is all you have left, you’re done. ACTUALLY the mix of sweet and super strong makes this wine much like a liquid Good & Plenty. Ok, so it’s not HORRIBLE tasting. I will definitely finish this wine, but I won’t enjoy it as much as I wish I could.

After taste: I feel like my tastebuds have been burnt off from whatever it is that makes this mystery wine smell so strong. My tongue actually feels like it has suffered mild burns- almost like I ate my hot dinner too soon. Other than that, no nasty fumes in my throat from this “licorice” wine.

The Experience: Overall, it wasn’t that bad, but that’s probably because I’ve had worse. The smell is too strong, my tastebuds are numb, and it’s cloaked in mystery. It could very well be black licorice mixed with grape juice and spiked with vodka, for all I know.

The Next Day: Ehhhh… I wasn’t pleased that I had to deal with a mild headache. If the wine tasted good, it might, almost, be worth it- but in this case it wasn’t.

Cherry Blossom Pinot NoirThe Label: is all the information (besides the regular legal mumbo jumbo) that is listed on the back of this bottle. I decided to go ahead and visit this website, because the name on this bottle in no way suits the wine that’s inside of it. Seriously. “Cherry Blossom” is the furthest thing from describing this wine. A better name would be Glycyrrhiza glabra. (The plant from which the root is taken to make licorice). Getting back to the website- I searched the website on their label, clicked on it, it took me to Bronco Wines. From there, I was unable to find ANY information on Cherry Blosson Pinot Noir or Cherry Blossom Cellars… Mysterious, no?

Alc. %: 13.5%

Repeat: I’ve definitely had worse, and this is not bad for a $4 of wine, but I still don’t think I’ll be buying it again.

Rating: 22 Glasses wine of the week


If you love #GoodandPlenty candy in liquid form, you might like this #wine: Click To Tweet

Thisreview didn’t end so well, BUT if you want to hear about some cheap wines that did better, check out: Trader Joe’s Shiraz and Two Vines Cabernet.

Do you like licorice? Better yet- do you like your wine to taste like it? Have you tried this wine? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.


Pamela is a Freelance Writer, Blogger, WAHM of 3, and Veteran Military Wife living in Southwest Texas. Raised in the Northeast and having lived a few years in the Pacific Northwest, she likes to write about mom life, parenting, frugal living, experiences, and WINE. (Lots of wine!) When she’s not busy chasing toddlers around, you can find her on the blog or on social media. Check her out on Instagram:

10 thoughts on “Wine of the Week: Cherry Blossom Pinot Noir”

  • Hahaha, although I’m sure there’s many Wine Enthusiasts out there, cringing at my entertaining reviews, it’s important to note that they are for enjoyment purposes. LOL Thanks for stopping by, Amber! (LMBO JK)

    • Hi Tasha! Right? It does stink when you get a dud- but in this case, I’m at least glad that I didn’t pay much for it. 🙂

  • Does not sound like something I’d go for but I’m really picky about reds.

    Nothing wrong with a screw top, though, especially nowadays. Trader Joe’s wines are hit or miss for me.

    • Hey Jill! Thanks for stopping by! I purchased a good variety from Trader Joe’s and I plan on posting about their wines soon, but my favorite is their 2 Buck Chuck Cabernet Sauvignon. 🙂

  • Love your site. The fact that you have lavender in the domain had me at “I like this” I”m lavender obsessed! I have to disagree on Cherry Blossom. I am highly PICKY on my Pinot Noirs and my pallate is pretty sophisticated too. My fave Pinot Noir is Flowers AMAZING, Or Meiomi but awhen I want a cheap after a long day wine Cherry Blossom is my pic. Flowers is $65 everywhere and $37 at Trader Joe’s so only for parties or occasion. I don’t taste licorice at all and it def doesn’t smell like Gas or marker LOL.

    I actually bought a case for a small red carpet event here in LA, I”m a native Texan but I live and work in LA, California and EVERYONE THOUGHT Cherry Blossom was at least a 20 buck wine!

    So I think its just personal preference. Its actually good for 4 bucks! 🙂

    • Hi Miranda! Thanks so much for stopping by! I totally agree- it’s definitely up to personal preference/experience. I’ll have to give Flowers and Meiomi a try…

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