I’ll cop to not always finishing the latest thriller for book club and I occasionally sleep through the early-morning group yoga class, but for the past year, I haven’t missed a single “wine night” with my girlfriends. What started as a one-off wine tasting party has turned into a tradition that we look forward to all month.
The concept is simple: Bring a bottle of vino that you’re eager to share with the group. It can be something you tried before and know you like, or one you picked solely for its pretty label (no judgement here, we've all done it). We start with the whites and then move on to red, and each person presents their choice—a dramatic reading of the winemaker’s description is always encouraged. Then we sniff, swirl, and, of course, taste. By now, we have tried 100-plus wines, spanning different grape varietals and price points.
One of our favorites? The $6 Almond Creek Vineyards almond-flavored sparkling wine, sold exclusively at Trader Joe’s.
From the first sip, there was a collective “ooh,” then “ahh.” A bit of googling revealed the process: prior to aging, almond oils are infused into the wine, lending a sweet and subtle flavor that has been likened to an amaretto liqueur. Your taste buds may also pick up on notes of peach and pear, while the bubbles create a light finish. Try it with a sour dessert or even a salty late-night snack. We’ve also heard it makes for next-level mimosas. So, brunch?
If you're ready to try an almond sparkling wine for yourself and don't have a Trader Joe's nearby, these three varietals are a great place to start.
Produced in Southern California’s Temecula wine region, this beloved blend has been wooing wine lovers since the late ’90s. It’s also rumored to be the inspiration for the Trader Joe’s dupe.
This Illinois-based winery describes their version as “an amaretti cookie in liquid form,” with hints of maraschino cherries and nutmeg. Enjoy it on its own, or—for a real sugar high—a slice of cake.
Made exclusively from grapes grown in Texas, this is one of the winery’s bestsellers. It’s also the perfect answer to those sweltering Southern summers.