Home Wine Regions Californian Wine Gallo Café Chardonnay

I have somewhat of an internal debate going on with this website.  Should I focus on small wineries that offer those hidden gems in the wine world, or should I review wines that are massed produced and anyone can find?  While I generally have an affinity for the independents, I also want this blog to be helpful to readers all over the states… not just to those who have access to the distributors & stores in my region.  So I’m trying to strike a balance…. review some wines that are available anywhere and some that may have more limited distribution.  But when I taste a wine like this one, I want to cast aside the mass producers altogether.

Gallo Café ChardonnayThe culprit is Ernest & Julio Gallo Café Chardonnay.  I can’t even remember the last time I tried a Gallo wine before this (if I’ve ever had one).  Something about the brand makes me wary and this experience justified all my fears.  This wine is the sweetest Chardonnay on earth.  It tastes like apple juice sweetened by honey… a lot of honey… too much honey.  Did I mention that this wine is too sweet?  Ugh.  I forced down a glas and a half and I had to dump it.

To my surprise my wife was upset when I dumped this wine.  She called it “wasteful” and said that she kind of liked it.  What!?   So is this a gender-specific wine?  Maybe women actually enjoy this, but I know that I didn’t.  I gave it a 77.  I know you may think that rating is high, but to be fair there weren’t any bad flavors in this… it is just too damn sweet.  I could see some folks enjoying it, but I would venture to guess that the majority of them would be 21 year old women (because that’s the legal age, right?) who are “new to wine.”

If you like good, well balanced wine but are on a budget this is not the wine for you.

4 replies to this post
  1. Hey there! Thanks for your review. I just went and grabbed a bottle of this, and after having a few sips – decided to scope the interwebs for people’s thoughts.

    Although, I agree with you – I did not originally think it was that sweet. Until you mentioned the Apple Juice / Honey pallet mixture I hadn’t mentally judged it properly I think.

    I actually enjoy this though, it is quite delicious.

    Thanks for your rating!

  2. I like this wine and so does my husband, so it’s not gender specific. I liked the fact that there are no bad flavors in it. Yes, it is sweet, but it’s not sour and doesn’t taste like vinegar. I suppose that wine snobs would put it down, because it is cheap. However, recently I was in a restaurant in Atlanta and had a $40 a bottle Chardonnay that tasted a lot like Cafe, but it wasn’t cheap. Everyone at the table remarked about how good that wine tasted. So, maybe the fact that it’s Gallo and cheap colored your thinking. Anyway, the point is moot. It’s always sold out, even at Total Wine in Atlanta, and I’m not about to pay shipping costs, so it’s not “readily available”. The wine store in my small town says that it’s on back order. Someone must like it.

  3. Thanks for sharing your opinion on this wine, Troutfan. The reviews expressed here represent one person’s opinion and we welcome differing points of view. I’m glad you like this wine and thank you for sharing what it is you like about it. We review plenty of cheap wines here and find many that we rate highly, so we wouldn’t knock it just for being a Gallo wine. I hope you’re able to find more of this wine soon. Cheers!

  4. I really like this wine Nd I am far from 21 like maybe 61. I like it because it IS a little sweeter and doesn’t have that alcohol bite to it. Only I am having a hard time trying to find it

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