The ever creative and prolific Beau Jarvis of Basic Juice and jZepp fame has unleashed a wine and food blog meme, “The Best in the Last 30“. He has challenged wine bloggers to recall their best wine sampled over the past 30 days. He then “tagged” Lenn over at LENNDEVOURS, who then passed the love to The Wine Chicks. Jay & Kristin sent the ball my way after posting a pair of Italian reds and a fairly obscure Rhone white (nice call, Jay!).
This has been a pretty light tasting month for me, with typical summer quaffers and a single tasting that produced an undistinguished group of notes with only a couple in the 8.5 range. This brings me to the previously posted wines for the most recent Wine Blogging Wednesday, the Trinitas Cellars, Old Vine Zinfandel 2002 and the M. Chapoutier, Banyuls 1998. Both wines earned the same 9/10 score, with the Banyuls edging out the Zin in a head-to-head duel with a bittersweet chocolate cake. IÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢d have to say that the Zin has to get the nod for the “best” wine, however, because it redefined for me what old vine ZinÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s can be with much less of the in your face whack of fruit, tannin and oak, but some depth and structure revealed after decanting or breathing. Here are my full tasting notes for the record:
Trinitas Cellars, Old Vine Zinfandel, Contra Costa County 2002 ($17.50) – Ruby color with blackberry, spice and cedar aromas; bold blackberry, raspberry and white pepper flavors with some oak notes and firm tannins. Not as thick and extracted as other old vine ZinÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢s, but a pleasure and a great find at under $20. Delicious now, but will cellar for 3 or more years. From Matt Cline, former winemaker of Cline Cellars, who has produced some great Zin’s over the years. I’m looking forward to tasting Trinitas vineyard designated Zin’s in the future. Score: 9/10
Update 9/18: As can be seen in the comments, Beau has asked me to tag a food blogger as well (Andrew doesn’t count since he writes mostly about wine for /food). So, I will go to the left coast this time and challenge foodista Viv over at Seattle Bon Vivant to recount the best food and wine match from the past 30 days. You have been tagged, Viv!