As we grow near the end of barbecue and grilling season, I’m recommending an affordable, wonderful wine that’s great with grilled food but would also be a welcome guest at this year’s Thanksgiving holiday table.
The wine is Artezin Old Vine Zinfandel Mendocino County ($15.95). It’s a very fruity and robust Zin that – unlike a lot of blockbuster Zinfandel these days – has a moderate alcohol level of 14.8%, so the alcohol doesn’t overwhelm the food (not to mention overwhelming the drinker).
Here’s what winemaker Randle Johnson had to say about his Artezin Old Vine Zin: “Ruby red in color this wine has indigo blue and violet hues. There is a concentration of delicious, bright pomegranate and boysenberry aromas followed by mouthwatering blackberry pie crust. Flavors are led by bright raspberry and red cherry cola, all of which are framed by a subtle pepper note. The cheerful fruit is complemented by baking spice,
most notably clove and cinnamon, with soft, mouth-watering tannins delivering a round, balanced finish.”
This full-bodied wine is made from a blend of sustainably farmed grapes from family-owned vineyards in the Ukiah Valley. The blend is 85% Zinfandel and 15% Petite Sirah, which was barrel-aged in 1-2 year old French oak.
In addition to food from the grill and barbecue, I think Artezin Old Vine Zinfandel would pair nicely with richer pasta dishes – especially Bolognese – and with fall and winter stews. It’s also a terrific tailgate wine.
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Originally trained as an anthropologist, Ted Scheffler is a seasoned food, wine & travel writer based in Utah. He loves cooking, skiing, and spends an inordinate amount of time tending to his ever-growing herd of guitars and amplifiers.
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