PAIR ELEGANT MEAL WITH ELEGANT ZINFANDEL
October 6, 2010 by Frank Sutherland
I always associate zinfandel with burgers, pizza and such hearty foods, and I can always find inexpensive zinfandels to accompany those foods.
But if you want to step up the quality of your food, such as a hearty Italian dish or flavorful beef, I recommend you also look for the next step up in zinfandel.
The jammy fruit and pepper flavors we expect in popularly priced zinfandels become more elegant while retaining their boldness.
My wine-tasting group compared a half-dozen zinfandels from California, which practically owns this popular grape.
(It's the second-most-common grape grown in the U.S.)
The results of our blind tasting are below.
2006 DEERFIELD RANCH OLD VINE RESERVE ZINFANDEL
Region: Buchignani/Garcia Vineyard/Dry Creek Valley/Sonoma
Aroma: In a really complex nose, we smelled lush plums, coffee, tobacco, tar, toasty oak and vanilla cream.
Palate: This wine had a silky, perfect texture, with a nice vanilla cream taste. The tannins were soft.
Verdict: This was not a typical zinfandel; more like a claret. It was voted first place.