2008 Honey Moon Viognier

2008 Honey Moon ViognierPrice: $4.99 @ Trader Joe’s

What They Said:

Per the bottle “Viognier is a rare and stylish grape with golden hues and amazing floral scents. Our Honey Moon Viognier is named after the June full moon, which signifies the moment when the sweet scent of the flowers turn into young grapes, creating this lush, full bodied wine with peach, apricot and honeysuckle aromas followed by luscious honey, mango and nectar finish.

What I Think:

One of those that seems to be a Bronco Wine Co. offering but isn’t, Trader Moon is just as secretive though. They are responsible for the many other moons on the TJ’s wine shelves… Old Moon Zin, Venetian Moon Pinot Grigio, Tuscan Moon Sangiovese and Velvet Moon Cab. Regardless this Honey Moon Viognier has been one of my favorites for years and I was amazed to see that I had yet to review it. Given that I wanted to quickly rectify the situation.

This one has a great nose, like fully pollinated red/orange fruit, loaded with peaches and apricots. On the palate peach and honey are prevalent on a full bodied frame of white stony, fruits. The finish is rich and plush with ripe peaches and just a hint of sweetness. To some, this may be too much sweetness but it works well for me. Drink this one on its own or with anything, literally. This one won a bronze medal in the recent 2009 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and is a sure thing to appear in my next Top 10 list…

Rating: Buy It

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40 thoughts on “2008 Honey Moon Viognier

  1. Haven’t tried the Honey Moon, will have to get some this weekend.

    Speaking of Viognier, I picked up a few bottles of the ’08 Shannon Ridge (Lake County) Viognier (and some of the 07 Syrah) at TJs the other day for $5.99. Haven’t tried any of the Shannon Ridge offerings yet, but I’m liking a lot of what I’ve sampled from Lake County to date, so I figured it was worth a try at that price.

    I’m looking forward to trying them this weekend.

  2. I call shenanigans. The wine is named after the June full moon, and yet the moon on the label is clearly crescent.

    I may just have to buy a few bottles, drink them, and then demand my money back.

  3. I’m so glad you enjoyed the Honey Moon Viognier! It’s one of my favorites and I buy it at least a few times a month, especially in the summer. A fantastic summer wine, great with pesto pasta.

  4. I agree – this is a nice summer wine. While not a sweet fan I’m not bothered by this wine’s sweetness; I actually enjoy the taste o’ honey in the finish.

  5. I really like this wine, but haven’t bought it for a while, because I’ve been on a NZ Sauvignon blanc kick. Went to pick some up yesterday, and they were all out!

  6. I really like the Honey Moon. The Crew tried the Shannon Ridge the other day and were not big fans. Viognier is supposed to be an aromatic wine and this one fell short in that department as well as taste. Go ahead and give it a try and see if you got a better bottle than we did.

  7. @joshiemac I agree with you on Lake County, a region to watch. Did you try the Shannon Ridge yet? What did you think? Get to the Honey Moon?

    @Kris lol, perhaps I’ll give that tactic a try. Good catch!

    @Camille This one is certainly in my summer white rotation

    @Liz you should copyright “taste o’honey”, I might have to use that in a review soon….

    @Marlyn bummer, hope you find it on your next visit

    @Angela Thanks for the heads up on the Shannon Ridge, wonder what @joshiemac thinks. I had the Rose and Zin from Shannon Ridge and thought both were nice (post coming soon) but I’m not running back to the store to get more

    @Aesop Thanks for the tip! Looks like Delicato is responsible for all the “Moon” labels at Trader Joe’s. Answers a mystery I’ve long been trying to solve…

  8. Sorry guys, this one’s deserving of a “moon” from me. I’m surprised it’s a Delicato brew, vs. a Fred Franzia concoction, but it tastes like an old Gallo label that is supposed to invoke an Old World heritage for a new world table grape (think Hearty Burgundy), but consists of another varietal altogether & tastes nothing like it’s name. This one is more like a Muskadet than a Viognier. Fans of White Zinfandel unite, this is for you! Sweet and viscous on the palate, no crisp acidity, typical of a Manteco table grape made into wine. My apologies for the rant, but this one was a disgrace to the breed.

  9. @Julia – Glad you enjoyed it

    @Mad Mike – Well the Mad in Mike seems fitting, joking… I think I understand what you are saying here. I see this as a nice bridge/introduction for someone new to Viognier. From a varietal purist perspective it is much to sweet, cloying and syrupy but since my wife doesn’t like most Viognier but drinks this one it is a wine we can enjoy together…

  10. Yeah, it’s our most popular & consistant “Viognier”, but nothing like the AMAZING JC Cellars 2007 ‘Boules’ Viognier from Condrieu/Seyssuel I had at the Tasting Room last week. The best and most intriguing Viognier I’ve had yet. Beautiful aromas, complex and spicy, wow!
    Yes, it’s very pricy ($40) but worth every penny.
    Definitely on my “Wish List” for Holidays and I’m seriously considering buying it for my older brother as well.

  11. A challenge for you then, Angela, could be to find a viognier very much like the Condrieu/Seyssuel in aromas and flavors, but at a price close to the Honey Moon’s. Good hunting.

  12. Wow, you’re on! It’ll take me a while thought.
    Good French Viognier close to the $5 mark will take a bit of poking about. I’ll let y’all know what I find along the way.

  13. Vinography just gave a nod to the 2008 Delicato Family Vineyards Loredona Viognier as an exceptional value. It is available at BevMo for $10. Could it be the answer to the challenge laid down here? Here is where it becomes an interesting conundrum, Delicato also makes this wine. So how about it. Anyone want to grab a bottle of the Loredona Viognier and share there thoughts?

  14. IMHO, any wine scored 9 or above by Alder at Vinography has a very high percentage of being a winner for most palettes. Alder scored the Loredona Viognier at “around 9.”

  15. Jason, i grabbed a bottle of both the 2007 and 2008 Loredona Viognier for a mini-vertival tasing party. Here are my thoughts
    and notes:
    2007–Heady scents of jasmine, pineapple and apricot give way to tight flavors of lime zest, watermelon rind and minerals with undertones of savory herbs. Pale champagne gold in color; light to medium body; unique with a glimpse or two of elegance; Rating: 12th Bottle (but on the borderline with a Buy It Rating).
    2008–Lime, honey and floral aromas that turn to flavors of creamy lime, golden raisin and smoke–long citrus zest finish; Rating: 12th Bottle
    The flavor elements of smoke and minerals really detracted from me enjoying these wines more. Cheers!

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