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Friday, October 19, 2018

Trader Joe's Pumpkin Spice Cream Liqueur

Currently visiting a booze-friendly state, Sonia and I decided to check out what the local Joe's had to offer in the way of exotic libations. In addition to canned wines and the standard Josephsbrau offerings, we spied this gem wedged in between the Three Buck Chuck display and some non-TJ's brand pumpkin ales—relics left over from an America that still tolerated pumpkin spice.

Not surprisingly, this isn't the first pumpkin liqueur we've ever sampled. I'm quite certain we've had more than one other brand, in fact, but the names of most escape me at the moment—mainly because they were entirely unworthy of note. The one other brand that's not bad that I can still remember is Fulton's Harvest. This product is comparable, but both Sonia and I agree it's slightly better.

Like Fulton's Harvest, this beverage is thick and smooth—similar to Bailey's or any other cream liqueur, for those of you unfamiliar with the pumpkin varieties. It's creamy, syrupy, and velvety. It's nearly the same consistency as non-alcoholic dairy cream—although, in this case, it's like the cream you'd get from an alcoholic cow that eats a lot of pumpkin spice. 

The flavor here starts off with a liquor-laden bite, but then gradually, the pumpkin spices open up on your palate. There's a nice balance of nutmeg, cinnamon, and ginger. It's like a sweet, liquefied pumpkin spice pudding, with just a bit of a kick. It'd be great, along with some vanilla ice cream, as the base for an autumnal adult milkshake. 

The alcohol content is similar to that of an average wine at 12.5%. It's strong enough to give the lightweights a buzz, but since it's so thick and desserty, it's difficult to down more than a shot or two at a time. 

Along with the recently-discovered Spiced Pumpkin Madeleines, this product is a winner. I'm sure it won't make quite the splash on social media that it might have circa October 2014, but if you're a drinker and you like pumpkin spice, Sonia and I will tell you it's definitely purchase-worthy. $8.99 for 750 ml. Double fours on this one.

Bottom line: 8 out of 10.

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