Region: Barossa Valley
Tonight I look across to our Western allies, the American’s; and one of their most famous wine varieties Zinfadel. There is a rich history behind this grape varietal in the United States, and it all starts from prohibition in the 1920’s. Thanks to prohibition most of the vineyards were ripped up. However, home wine-making remained legal. Some of these vines had survived over the prohibition period, and it wasn’t until long after the depression and in 1970’s, that Zinfadel stamped its foot down in America all thanks to a British write-up. By the mid 70s to early 80’s, Zinfadel took the American Market, with the sale and popularity of White Zinfadel. By the end of the 20th century, red Zinfadel made its breakthrough onto the American market.
This is a variety that can show quite a bit of variance in its tastes, and also can result in a fluctuating alcohol content. Ranging between 12-18% Alc/Vol.
Some of the defining fruit characters of this wine varietal are: Raspberry, Black cherry,Black/Blue berry, Blackcurrant, Plum, Raisin (Late harvesting character), Fig, Apricot, Red fruit Jam.
Secondary aromas include: Licorice, Star Anise , Smoke/Ash, Black Pepper.
Oak can bring around aromas of: Vanilla, Coconut,Nutmeg, Peach, Mocha, Burnt Sugar/Toffee, Coffee, Cinnamon, Clove, Tobacco.
Now onto this wine. As I poured it out into the decanter, it is a beautiful plum, almost vivid purple colour.
There are aromas of black cherry and blackcurrant fruit. There are subtle tones of apricot sweetness that can be detected along the lines too. We also hit up with the aroma of toffee and licorice tones too. The wine upfront, nearly smells like a very bold Pinot Noir. It displays appealing fruit, but not as dry as a Cabernet, or Shiraz. There is no earthy tones to the nose.
This wine was decanter’d 1.5 hours prior to consumption.
On the palate, and the fruit deliverance is quick and punchy. There is defiant plum and blackcurrant, but it is quickly erased and works to black pepper and drives into a spice and tannin wash, with an acidic hit, and finishes to a savory stem like tobacco finish; with lengthy blackcurrant and licorice.
**The longer the wine spent in the decanter, raisin notes started to make their way into the wine both on the nose and palate.**
It is quite impeccable, and indeed interesting. A showcase of a vine variety that is not common in this country.
Drink: Now – 2030
The SA Wine Guy