7 Deadly Zins

A perfectly Zinful wine for Mardi Gras

Consistently marvelous Zin from Michael David Winery, the Seven Deadly Zins bottle has lost its clever poetry from the back label without losing any of the rich, peppery, spicy aromas and flavor which has characterized this Lodi-grown production year in and year out for well over a decade.  This is a red that never lets me down, with a rich fruity nose and a very nicely rounded mouth-feel.  On the finish I find both currant and dark cherry tastes in the 2013.  A festive, well-integrated stand-alone sipper, I enjoy it with Italian and Asian foods, as well as the softer cheeses.

You’ll find folks who prefer Cabs or Pinots who refused to admit they like any Zins, of course. For folks seeking a rich, fragrant glass to share with friends the 2013 vintage once again boasts a complex enough flavor profile to serve after almost any other bottle (except, perhaps, Viognier, which tends to influence the taste-buds subtly long after the glass is empty.)

Highly recommended – a personal favorite.



Colosi Terre Siciliane Rosso

I opened a familiar red Sicilian, the 2014 Colosi Rosso, on one of the final nights in February 2017 as the weather turned abruptly colder, and although still a bit on the young, edgy side, this spicy purple gem hit the spot. It paired superbly with gouda, and would go down easily with hearty dishes with tomato sauce and beef.

Starting with an interesting and inviting nose, Colossi’s Rosso is a balanced red blend of Nero d’avola (a personal favorite) and Nerello Mascalese infused with plum and red fruit flavors right through the finish.

This Colosi can stand on its own, but it’s robust enough to serve with a meal. I’m glad to have several more bottles set aside to revisit in another year or two.

Saint Siffrein Chateauneuf-du-Pape

I’m a big fan of wines from the Rhône, and the 2007 Domaine de Saint Siffrein Chateauneuf-du-Pape was no exception when I opened it in the autumn of 2016. A deep, rich red in the glass, I savored the herbal bouquet and while some reviewers have noted an absence of tannins I’d say they’re present, but subdued, so they don’t get in the way of the fruit. I’d characterize the 2007 as notes of currant and a hint of cherries and yeasted bread, with a pleasant, very smooth finish.

This Chateauneuf works very nicely with smoked wild Norwegian salmon, served with fresh greens. It’s not as “big” as some of its peers, perhaps, but pairs up nicely with seafoods, well-aged cheeses, and dark chocolate.

I’m not sure of the proportions, or even certain of what varietals are present, but I credit a hint of Mourvédre for the slightly smoky character of the finish, and it surely leads with Grenache and Syrah.

Highly recommended, likely delightful for many years yet.