We Did a Blind Taste Test With Target Wine—Here's Our Honest, Unfiltered Review

Updated 05/05/19

Those who don't have a thorough knowledge of wine often associate price with quality—but does great wine have to be expensive? According to Target, the answer is no. While you might associate the retail giant with home décor and household basics, it has been quietly growing its alcohol offerings. In fact, wine was the fastest-growing division in the food and beverage division in 2017.

Target's in-house wine label, California Roots, aims to make quality wine that's affordable, too. Crafted from "premium grapes grown under the warm California sun," the wines are priced at just $5. The collection includes rosé, pinot grigio, chardonnay, and Moscato, and while it's not available online, Target claims it's stocked in over 80% of stores. The real question: Can $5 wine actually taste good? We did a blind taste test to find out.

Wine taste test


California Roots Rose Wine $5

Flavor: Light and surprisingly not as sweet as the two white wines in Target's California Roots line, this rose was a standout. When our team tested it against a $22 wine from Provence, seven out of eight people chose Target's $5 blend. 

Aftertaste: There was a slightly sour aftertaste, but overall it was smooth. 

Overall Rating: 4/5

Pinot Grigio

California Roots $5

Flavor: This was quite a sweet wine with a buttery finish. Taste testers were divided: Some said it was too sweet for a pinot grigio, and others said it was their favorite of the bunch. If you love chardonnay but are looking for a lighter wine, this is certainly one to try.

Aftertaste: This wine had a good finish and clean aftertaste.

Overall Rating: 2.5/5


California Roots $5

Flavor: Sweet but not too syrupy, this Moscato was the dark horse of the bunch. "It's really easy to drink and tastes like a good dessert wine," one reviewer said. "It doesn't taste cheap at all." If you like to end your meal with a sweet wine, this a solid, affordable option. 

Aftertaste: Soft and not too saccharine. 

Overall Rating: 3.5/5


California Roots $5

Flavor: Despite the strong aroma, this wine was light and only slightly buttery. Many taste testers said the pinot grigio tasted more like a classic chardonnay compared to this drop. "This would pair really well with a dish like pasta or chicken, whereas I'd sip on the pinot grigio on its own," one person said. 

Aftertaste: A pleasant dry finish. 

Overall Rating: 3/5

Next up: 11 rosé wines our team has been drinking all summer long.

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