The 2011 Flying Heart Red is a $4.99 Trader Joe’s exclusive produced by the custom and private label winery, Fior di Sole (they also produce Spiral wines), located in Napa Valley, California. This is a “kitchen sink” blend of Merlot, Petit Sirah, Zinfandel, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Chardonnay of all things, sourced from more than one California grape growing AVA. It is not all that rare to add White grapes to a Red wine, but usually Viognier is used not Chardonnay. In the Rhone Valley of France, Viognier can comprise up to 20% of the Cotie-Rotie Syrah blend and in Australia it is not uncommon to see a Shiraz/Viognier blend. The White grapes adds extra aroma to the nose and puts a little shine on the flavors. The alcohol content is a rather tame considering the grapes that were used 12.5%.
The color is a clean, shiny, black cherry red. The nose is slightly candied and spicy, it reminds me of the spice drops candy along with plum, prune juice and cold coffee. Upon first sip you are hit with a rush of flavors, then the wine hollows out on the mid palate. It starts with sweet cherry cough syrup, cinnamon spice, strawberry and cherry fruit roll ups. The mid palate does add a little interesting blackberry and curry spice. You don’t notice either the tannins or the acidity, there is a certain sweetness to this blend, though I don’t know if it goes all the way being an official Sweet wine. The finish is the blackberry and spice and while it flames out quickly its shadow hangs around for a while.
The 2011 Flying Heart Red is a well priced wine for fans of sweet Red wines. Sweet Red wines is supposed to be all the rage for Millennial wine drinkers, for me personally, I think most Sweet red wines are not worth more than 5 bucks, so the Flying Heart Red is well priced. But then again, I do recall, that when I first got into wine it was sweet Rieslings that caught my attention, so if sweet is not where my palate is now, I do understand where the Sweet wine drinkers are coming from.