Friday, April 3, 2009


This week I had a chance to attend a tasting of 12 Zinfandels hosted by Greg Dal Piaz at the Snooth offices. My tasting notes follow:

Flight 1: East of Napa

2007 7 Deadly Zins Lodi 14.5% $13
Medium to full bodied with aromas of smoked and raw meat, blood, vanilla and a grassy vegetal green-ness... contrasting on the palate with milk chocolate, juicy dark cherries, blackberries, red licorice, pepper and saddle.

2006 Terra d'Oro SHR field blend Amador County 14.5% $25
Pleasant aromas of lilac, violets, herbs and wood with flavors of blueberries, sour grape candy, red fruits with balanced tannins and a slowly fading finish.

2005 Berryessa Gap Yolo County 15.8% $16
Smoked meats again, dishwater, black and white pepper, ripe cherries jolly rancher, chemical aftertaste, harsh wood.

Flight 2: Old Vines

2006 Ravenswood Sonoma County Old Vines 15% $15
Still more smoked meats, rubber, white pepper, vanilla, sharp drying tannins, and wood.

2006 Rodney Strong Sonoma County Knotty Vines 14.8% $20
Immediately liked fresh floral aromas, fruit forward flavors with sweet ripe cherries, tongue numbing alcohol, red peppers and blueberries.

2006 Dry Creek Vineyard Sonoma County Old Vine 14.5% $25
Earthy aromas and full body are the foundation for the cool flavors of cherries, violet candy, and powdered perfumes.

Flight 3: Sonoma

2006 Valley of the Moon 14.5% $20
Smoked bacon and a thick, juiciness with an unfiltered look. Notes of blackberries and currants reveal nice acids and balanced tannins with a violet mildness.

2006 Simi Sonoma County 13.5% $20
Not too much happening here... mild chocolate with cherries, cassis, white pepper and hints of acetone.

2006 Four Vines The Sophisticate Sonoma County 14.8% $24
This one was a word association party: earthy aromas, mushrooms, spices, cinnamon, chocolate cherry candy, pepper, raspberry, dusty, red, minerality, refreshing, blueberries, blackberries.

Flight 4- Dry Creek

2006 Windsor Sonoma Dry Creek Valley 14.9% $24
A nose of tar with juicy chocolate berries, vanilla, black tea and smoke.

2004 Carol Shelton Maple Zin 14.9% $33
Wild mushrooms over mild aromas of red fruits and a palate of watermelon, perfume, chalk, candy and powder.

2007 Dashe Dry Creek Valley 14.7% $24
Muted floral aromas followed by an intensity on the palate. Rustic notes of blueberry pie a la mode, black pepper, cherries and grape jam.

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