This morning was the final day of my three day adventure in the world of Zinfandel. I have to say that I have just taken advanced studies in this red grape, and have a whole new appreciation for Zinfandel and those who have dedicated their lives to it. I am talking about the ZAP Festival, or Zinfandel Festival held in San Francisco each of the past 22 years.
Today was the Grande Tasting, which open it’s doors to the Press and Trade, of whom I am happy to say I am part of. The advantage is being exposed to well over 100 wineries offering their best Zin to us for two hours before the doors are opened to ZAP Members and then the general public. This was a sweet opportunity for me personally, as not only did I get time with the Vintner / Owners that I really wanted to interview, and taste wines with them, but also to swap stories and info with my brother and sister writers and wine professionals.
I can honestly tell you that once you swirl, sip and swallow a really fine Zinfandel, one with depth, layers and that jammy flavor, you will only want more. The great Zins I had the opportunity to sip have convinced me that this grape varietal is being produced to only get better over years, contrary to some popular belief, as well as “critiques”. During my three days of swirl, sip and not always spitting, I tasted Zinfandels that were well over seven to ten years old, and still held body, flavor, as well as matured tannins and length.
As the majority of Zinfandel is produced in Northern California, mainly due to soil, climate, and availability of such excellent Vintners, it isn’t a surprise that in many ways, Zinfandel is a rival of Cabernet Sauvignon. I would easily put myself out on a limb by saying many of the converts of the Cab Crew of past years, have been Zapped, and are now confirmed as Zap Heads, myself included.
In the near future I will be writing a more in depth article reviewing Zins from this festival, and will give you my “Top Ten”, so you just might want to Follow me so you don’t miss it.
With that I say..Cheers