Monday, December 3, 2007

Last Night's Tipple

Ravenswood, you will recall, has three different tiers of wines: the Vintners Blend range at the low end, the County series in the middle, and the vineyard-designated wines at the high end. There are five different Zinfandels in the County series: Sonoma County, Napa County, Mendocino County, Amador County, and Lodi. Lodi, you exclaim. Lodi isn't a county. Well, what can I tell you? Ravenswood Lodi Zinfandel is in the County series of wines. I haven't been able to find the Mendocino County and the Amador County Zins, so the 2005 Lodi will be the last of this series that I will have for a while.

Lodi is a mid-sized city located in San Joaquin County, in central California at approximately the same latitude as San Francisco Bay. It calls itself the Zinfandel Capital of the World, even though its grapes aren't the best-regarded in the state. Because it is inland, away from the coast, it lacks the cooling ocean breezes that help to moderate the weather in some other grape-growing regions in California. Consequently, Lodi grapes tend to be ripe, and wines made from them tend to be fruity and high in alcohol.

And, indeed, the Ravenswood Lodi Zin is fruity and high in alcohol. Of course, both the Ravenswood Sonoma and Napa Zins were fruity and high in alcohol, too. The fruit is darker in this one, though. I get plums and stewed fruit. It's not unpleasant, but I'd take the Sonoma Zin any day of the week. At least I don't have to have the Creedence Clearwater Revival song going through my head when I drink that.

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