Wine Blogging Wednesday #60 – “I have Zinned”

This month, Wine Blogging Wednesday created by Lenn Thompson of LENNDEVOURS, is in it’s 60th edition and hosted by Megan at Wannabe Wino. Her theme this month is anything Zin, and pairing it with BBQ and or grilled meat. Well since I’m a vegetarian I couldn’t comply with the second part but I did the first and served it with a great pizza from my favorite local pizzeria Angelos. I thought it would be funny to choose a “white zin” but I didn’t and chose the 2006 Seghesio San Lorenzo Block 8 Zinfandel. I got this as one of my wine club shipments from Segehesio about a year ago.

From Seghesio on the history of the San Lorenzo Vineyard:

Rachel Ann Passalacqua met Eugene “Pete” Seghesio when purchased her father’s Zinfandel grapes from the San Lorenzo vineyard in southernmost Alexander Valley. In 1956 the couple was married. Seghesio Farms now manages that same vineyard, purchased in 1896 by Rachel Ann’s grandfather for the sum of ten gold coins. At that time, the vineyard was already planted to and producing Zinfandel. Today, it represents our oldest plantings of Zinfandel.”

The information on the wine –

Appellation: Alexander Valley, Sonoma

Grapes: 100% Zinfandel

Fermentation: 11 day punchdown in 6 Ton open top fermenters

Oak program: 12 months in French oak, 25% was new

Alcohol: 15.4%

Price: $35

2006seghesiosanlorenzoMy Tasting Notes –

Nose: brown sugar, coffee grounds, fig, raisin and molasses

Taste: plum, fig, blackberry, baking spices, thyme

Mouthfeel: full body, round, dry and spicy

Finish: long and fruity with hints of cocoa

Two words to describe this would be BIG and RICH, not to be confused with the country music band of the same name. Although as big as it was and with the 15.4% ABV it was not out of balance in any way and wasn’t over the top but brimming at the edges. The nose was as if I had walked into a coffee shop that was baking coffee cake while eating some dried figs. Amazing! Each sip, completely wrapped my tongue in layers of dark fruit, and hints of thyme. And I know there aren’t any taste receptors on the bottom of my tongue but it seemed as though I could really taste it from the bottom up. Maybe it was dripping all the way through my tongue. Gross thought, but this was killer! Definitely could have gone with some smoked baby back ribs, but it rode nicely with my pizza!!

Cheers to another WBW!

Categories: $30-$40, seghesio, Wine Blogging Wednesday, wine review, Zinfandel | Tags: , , | 4 Comments

Tuesday Quick Sip – 2005 Renwood Old Vine Zinfandel

Wine Information

Vineyards – Amador county appellation; average age of 45 year old head pruned vines

Grape – 100% Zinfandel

Aging- 15 months in oak; 23% new American Oak, 77% 2-3 year old French and American Oak

Price – $15

2005renwoodzinMy Tasting Notes

Nose – dried cherries, chocolate, blackberry, raisin

Taste – raspberry puree, blackberry, fig, cherry, nutmeg

Mouthfeel – medium to full body, spicy with dry dusty tannins

Finish – long and spicy with a hint of espresso at the end

The 2005 Renwood Old Vine Zinfandel is a great expression of what Zinfandel in this price range can be. For $15 it shows lots of dark fruit and “raisiny” goodness without being overly jammy or extracted. Great spiciness through the whole palate and firm tannic structure help balance out the fruitiness of the wine. Although a great value Zin, it may be a bit much for an everyday drinker but would great with pizza, barbecue, or grilled foods.


Categories: $10-$20, wine review, Zinfandel | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Hendry’s little brother – 2006 HRW Zinfandel

HRW” is a fairly new line of wines from Hendry that offers some value to their brand, priced at around half of what the big brother costs. The wines are blends of the leftover juice from their single block wines, that for whatever reason wasn’t “good enough”. The 2006 HRW Zinfandel ( $18 ) is a blend of juice from their Block 7&22 and the Block 28 Zinfandel. The wine was fermented in stainless steel tanks and aged in French Oak for 12 months. Approximately ten percent of the oak was new with the remaining being one, two and three year old Zinfandel barrels.

2006hrwzinMy Tasting Notes –

Nose – prune, plum, blackberry, smoke

Taste – black cherry, raisin, plum and cocoa

Mouthfeel – medium to full body, dusty tannins and spicey

Finish – quite long with dusty dry tannins and dark fruit flavors

We drank this with some grilled food and redskin potato salad during this unseasonably warm weather Richmond was having this weekend. The pairing worked out well with the smoky notes really coming out with the smokiness of the grilled food. I really enjoy the Hendry “Zins” but have a hard time popping a $30-$40 bottle of wine on a daily basis or to have at a cookout. The HRW line gives you the quality you expect from Hendry with slightly less complexity, in a rocking Napa Zin.


Categories: $10-$20, wine review, Zinfandel | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Quick Sip – 2005 MonteVina Terra d’ Oro Zinfandel

I usually don’t buy wines from Sam’s Club, I like to give my wine business to the local shops around town versus the big guys who don’t “need” my business. But the other day I picked this up for the fun of it.

2005terradoroWine Background

Grapes – 100% Zinfandel

Vineyards – Amador County

Oak program – Each lot was fermented separately, then pressed into American and French small oak barrels, 38% of which was new oak. The individual lots aged for fifteen months before being blended for bottling

Price – $15 – $18

My Tasting Notes

Color – Crimson

Nose – cherry, rhubarb, blackberry

Taste – black currant, spice, raspberry, cedar and cola

Mouthfeel – smooth and lush, with round medium body and dry elegant tannins

Finish – medium in length and fruity

We had this with some awesome veggie pizza from Angelo’s in Midlothian. It was a great pizza wine, lots of layered fruit and lush round mouthfeel. The 2005 MonteVina Terra d’ Oro Zinfandel was very fun, good structured Zin with a splash of acidity that wasn’t overly extracted or to “big” for its britches. It’s got a lot of distribution so you should be able to find it just about anywhere.


Categories: $10-$20, wine review, Zinfandel | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Zinfandel Tasting and A Little History

Tonight at the Wine Cellar, Jeff will be starting his education series as he himself is doing the pouring. He will be showcasing red Zinfandel with 3 in a range from light to full bodied and 2 old vine Zins from 68-100 year old wines.

Hailing from Croatia, Zinfandel originally made its way into the United States in 1829 via Long Island New York before it was first planted in the Napa and Sonoma Valleys in 1859.  The style of Zinfandel can be quite varied, from over the top fruit bombs, to soft and subtle gems, to jammy exotic Ports and any combination of those three.  In California, Zinfandel is the only grape that comes close to Cabernet Sauvignon with respect to acreage and crushed juice volume and has recently taken some of the spotlight off of the King of California, Mr. Cabernet.  As mentioned above, Jeff is going to show us 2 good example of Old Vine Zins, but what exactly is the definition of “Old Vine”.  Well in fact nothing defines the “Old Vine” labeling of Zinfandels and that subject has been talked about greatly, and this year was a huge topic across the blogosphere.  Certain winemakers such as Joel Peterson from Ravenswood winery define Old Vines as those between 50 and 80 years old and anything over 80 years of age as Ancient vines.  David Gates of Ridge Winery bases his definition of Old Vine on any vines that are 50 years of age and older.  And the list goes on and on of famous Zinfandel producers most of whom give, what I feel, good definitions of what they consider to be old, but in fact if they wanted to name 10 year old vines as “Old”, they could. Not that there is anything wrong with that. (Seinfeld reference)

So come check out what Jeff has to offer tonight and see if Old Vine does make a difference, and get your palette trained on Red Zinfandel.

See you tonight from 5:00 to 8:00 and FREE as always.


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Categories: old vine, ridge, wine cellar, wine industry issues, wine tasting, Zinfandel | Leave a comment

Wine Tasting – 2005 Seghesio Prati Vineyard Zin

This came in our May Seghesio club shipment and is one of their Zinfandels that is only offered to wine club members. Enrico Prati immigrated to Asti California in 1910 and in 1914 he married Ida, the daughter of Edoardo and Angela Seghesio. The Prati family has been growing grapes in Alexander Valley for over 90 years, allowing this vineyard to experience four generations of love for grapes and wine. The 2005 vintage from the Prati vineyard was harvested on October 8th and had a final alcohol level of 15%. The 2005 Prati Vineyard Zinfandel was then aged for 10 months in 75% American Oak and 25% French Oak.

My Tasting Notes

Nose – Raisin, black licorice, plantain, vanilla coke and cherry

Taste – Mr. Goodbar, black currant jam, fig

Mouthfeel – Smooth, medium body, velvety tannins and nice acid level, very well balanced and no excessive heat from 15% alcohol

Finish – dry and wet at the same time, very interesting, lasted med to long in length,  and had a huge blast of black cherry flavor

We always love the Seghesio Zins which is why we are members of their wine club, especially because we can get special access to single vineyard wines. The Prati is another great example of why Seghesio is such a well respected winery. The multiple layers of flavor and texture wrapped in a well balanced package for just over $20 made for a great wine at a great price.

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Categories: seghesio, wine tasting, Zinfandel | 2 Comments