Cheers January/February 2013

Cheers is dedicated to delivering hospitality professionals the information, insights and data necessary to drive their beverage business by covering trends and innovations in operations, merchandising, service and training.

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CHEERS WINE PANEL (92) Ravenswood Barrica Vineyard Sonoma Zinfandel 2010 (California). Black-fruit nose; raspberry and blackberry flavor; substantial tannins; long finish. ($35) (92) Ballentine Vineyards Zinfandel 2009 (California). Blueberries on the nose and palate followed by vanilla and clove spice; fine-grained tannins on the finish; great value for a Napa appellation. ($25) (92) Nalle Dry Creek Zinfandel 2008 (California). A traditional old-style zin with mouth-filling bramble and balanced alcohol; rich black raspberry and purple plum; not for the faint of heart; pair with a thick steak. ($32) (92) Puccioni Dry Creek Old Vine Zinfandel 2009 (California). Great Dry Creek Valley character; wild berries and cherries are noted in the beautiful dark fruits; accompanied by spice and cedar notes; good spice intensity. ($25) (91) Frog's Leap Napa Valley Zinfandel 2010 (California). A classic zinfandel profile with a velvety mouthfeel and well-rounded acidity; the texture and fruit roll over the midpalate creating a silky, berry finish; great food wine. ($27) (91) Bonterra Mendocino County Zinfandel 2010 (California). Produced from organically grown grapes, this wine is elegant and bright; the color is a dense ruby with purple notes; the nose is scented with bright berry, plum, and peppery notes. Flavors are bright and clean, with the intense fruit and barrel aging contributing to the long and balanced finish. ($16) (91) Triusco Primitivo 2009 (Italy). This primitivo, from the southern tip of Italy, combines rich fruit with an acid-driven finesse, providing a balanced, high-quality wine; the nose is brighter, and more fruit driven than most of its American cousins. Six months in barrel provide a hint of spice and texture, adding to the complexity of the wine. ($20) (92) Green & Red Vineyards Napa Valley Chilies Canyon Vineyard Zinfandel 2009 (California). Year to year, this wine is consistent in flavor, body and depth; a no-fail wine that pleases every time. ($27) (91) OZV Lodi Zinfandel 2009 (California). A nose of blueberries and chocolate lead to flavors of raspberry jam; extremely well balanced with a pleasant lingering finish. ($18) (92) Hendry Blocks 7 & 22 Napa Valley Zinfandel 2010 (California). Restrained, concentrated raspberries on the palate with light spice; nice acidity makes this food-friendly. ($33) (91) Predator Old Vine Zinfandel 2010 (California). Aromas of chocolate and berries; body is fruity and full with a finish of mocha, raspberry and spice; from Rutherford Wines in Lodi. ($15) (92) Moibus Alexander Valley Zinfandel 2009 (California). Alexander Valley produces very fruit-forward wines, and this wine over-delivers; rich raspberry and blackberry fruit married with gentle tannins; almost like chocolate-covered cherries in a glass; great wine to pair with barbeque. ($25) (92) Dry Creek Vineyard Heritage Zinfandel 2009 (California). A blend of 87% zinfandel and 13% petite sirah; distinctive jammy characters; aromas of raspberry and red berry; on the palate, the wine exhibits denser elements of blackberry, anise and pepper, finishing with a smooth and balanced finish. At just 13.5% alcohol, this is a sophisticated zinfandel with old world character and charm. ($20) (92) Quivira Dry Creek Zinfandel 2010 (California). Dry Creek is sometimes seen as the benchmark region for producing quality zinfandels, and this wine does not disappoint. Dark in the glass, with purple hints; the nose is filled with berry and spiced plum, with notes of vanilla; on the palate, the rich fruit is balanced by the acidity, with dark fruit and balanced tannins. ($22) (92) Charles Krug St. Helena Napa Valley Zinfandel 2008 (California). From one of the pioneers of wine production in Napa Valley, this zinfandel has a dark ruby color, and lovely focus on the nose and palate. Plenty of berry and cherry are complemented by brown spice and hints of vanilla; the palate is supple, and the finish is long and balanced. ($25) 32 | JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2013 (91) Joel Gott Zinfandel 2010 (California). A spicy, dry, dark-style zinfandel; never too jammy, never too sweet; displays dark wild berry, spicy pepper, zingy cinnamon, and finishes with hints of mint and well-integrated tannins; great with roasted red meats, or just about anything grilled. ($16) (91) Ca' Momi Napa Valley Zinfandel 2010 (California). Deep, dark-red color, rich and oppulent notes of red fruits and dark cherries, layers of sweet raspberry and currant notes; great middle and finish. ($13) (91) Tramanto Russian River Sonoma Zinfandel 2009 (California). The average vine age is over 80 years, and the cool climate showcases the rich, dark fruit with a touch of spice; hints of dark chocolate, blackberries and wild strawberries; elegant finish with a lighter style of alcohol. ($40) (90) Plungerhead 2010 Zinfandel (California). A fun wine with an easy-to-open "cork" that releases lots of yummy, ripe, easy-drinking blueberry and raspberry fruits; smooth; try with barbeque ribs or burgers. ($13) (90) Bogle Old Vine 2009 Zinfandel (California). A consistent performer every year; medium bodied with hints of spice and vanilla; nice black-raspberry fruits; try with grilled meats and veggies. ($13) (90) Starry Night Alexander Valley Zinfandel 2008 (California). Classic aromas of lilac and wildflowers leading to

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