Thursday, May 10, 2012

Quivira Vineyards and Winery 2009 Zinfandel, Dry Creek Valley

This wine accompanied dinner at Il Fornaio restaurant on Coronado Island in San Diego. It was a staff dinner before a long work assignment at our annual conference.

It took longer than expected to get to the restaurant because our water taxi was delayed by Navy Seals who were in San Diego Bay conducting a training exercise. Before long, our mission was accomplished as we sat down to a delicious Italian dinner at the Tuscan style restaurant perched on the edge of the water.

While many at our table opted for a craft beer, the Quivira Zinfandel caught my eye. Although the winery was unfamiliar to me, Sonoma’s Dry Creek Valley is an outstanding wine region and Zin is a great match for pasta.

A flare of blueberry and jam greets the nose. On the palate this is a round wine with blackberry and plum. It struck a nice balance between refreshing, smooth berry notes and a dry dash of black pepper. This is a medium to full bodied wine. It was a great pairing with my lasagna and should match well with pizza or grilled food.

The blend is 83% Zinfandel, 9% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Petite Sirah, 3% Syrah, 2% Grenache, which adds interest to this wine. The wine comes from “12 diverse vineyard lots” but is not a 100% estate produced wine. The winery is biodynamic and uses compost and cover crops instead of chemical fertilizers.

Quivira should also be given props for the crazy wild pig that appears on the label. The wild pigs came over with some of the first settlers of the region and feed on the Zinfandel grapes when their food sources become scarce in the dry summertime. On the up side, Zinfandel pairs very well with wild pig sausage.

The 2009 Quivira Zinfandel sells for about $20 (a reasonable $34 at our restaurant) and is a good choice for lunch or outdoor barbecues.

Rating: 4 of 5   Value: 3 of 5

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