Search Articles

Please Share

FacebookTwitterDiggDeliciousStumbleuponGoogle BookmarksRedditTechnoratiLinkedin

Subscribe to Blog via RSS

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Sponsors

Search for Events

Sponsors

Most Read Articles

Zin Pourin' and Food Porn at ZAP Epicuria

Heading out the door last night to drive to San Francisco for ZAP Epicuria 2013, I stopped, turned around, and grabbed my camera. A big lens can be unwieldy for crowded walk-around events though. So I ditched the zoom and attached my nifty — and extremely light — portrait/macro lens. I'm glad I did. These photos should give you a great flavor of the event. Enjoy!

rose pistola ravioli

Light and delicious is a good way to start. And truffles! Rose Pistola fit the bill with Ricotta Black Truffle Pansotti with Parmesan Broth and shaved Black Truffle.

il-davide

Il Davide's Black Truffle Porcini-filled Agnolotti with White Truffle Fondue tempted me to lick the bowl.

05-Ridge-Lytton-Springs

Then it was time for Zinfandel. There's no better way to start than with Ridge. Their 2005 Lytton Springs blend was elegant but flavor-packed.

Joel-Peterson

Joel Peterson of Ravenswood had a decanter full of Zinfandel...

belloni-3l

that came from this 1997 three liter bottle made from... 

belloni-vnyd

this historic Russian River Valley property with 90+ year old vines. The large format bottle meant the wine still showed some youth, but there was also the grace that comes with age. This was one of my favorite wines of the night and the one I went back to for my very last sip.

saddleback-cellars

Nils Venge also brought his wine in a large format container but, appropriately for a winery called Saddleback Cellars, he used a pony keg. The wine was his 2010 Old Vine Zinfandel from the Frediani Vineyard's 88-year old vines, Calistoga AVA. The wine was excellent and I'm sure he was tipping it to get the last drops for people by evening's end.

scott-harvey

Old vine Zinfandel was a recurring theme for the evening. Scott Harvey and Jana Harvey featured the 2010 Scott Harvey Old Vine Reserve, Amador County from an 80-year old vineyard that had been owned by Scott's grandfather.

25-lusk

Time for more food. These delicate but decadent bites from Twenty Five Lusk were Duck Confit Crepes with Organic Watercress, Comte and Dried Cherry Powder. The ravaged state of the platter testifiess to pace at which people were snatching them up.

A16

A16's bowl and spoon presentation brought a little bit of restaurant dining to The Concourse. Their Lamb Sausage with Butter Beans, Herbs and Fennel had a lot of fans, I among them.

Carneros-Bistro

But there's nothing wrong with finger food and there was nothing wrong with these tasty bites from the Carneros Bistro, Spiced Tartlets of Sonoma Duck Confit, Caramelized Onions, and Big Rock Blue Cheese.

Tres-Sabores-Por-que-no

Julie Johnson of Rutherford's Tres Sabores blends Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot and asks "Por que no? My question is, "May I have some more?"

mission-eatery

Jule and Tres Sabores also took food pairing and estate-grown products to a higher level by providing guinea fowl raised at the vineyard/ranch/farm to Local: Mission Eatery who then made these scrumptious Crostini with Guinea Hen Confit, Red Onion Jam and Pepper Cress.

le-trucs

Le Truc served up one of the most memorable and distinctive bites of the evening. I loved their Spicy Thai Curry Pulled Pork on Candied Jalapeno with Cilantro and Lime and will definitely be visiting the restaurant big black schoolbus to try their other dishes.

grgich

Also memorable was the excellent 2009 Grgich Hills Milijenko's Old Vines Zinfandel. On a side note, I like the way this photo has a slight faux-aged look even though I didn't edit a single pixel.

biale

There's nothing faux about the age of the vines used for this 2011 Robert Biale Vineyards R. W. Moore Vineyard Zinfandel from Coombsville. They date back to 1905.

Harris

Harris' knows beef and I had no beefs at all with their signature Steak Tartare. Both the taste and texture were perfect.

straits

From raw beef we go to slow-cooked with Straits' flavorful and tender 5-Spice Bali-style BBQ Beef Ribs. The spice mix is a proprietary blend, so I'm going to have to go to the restaurant over-and-over again to enjoy it.

pedroncelli-86

The slow-cooked meat was a good setup for this 1986 J. Pedroncelli Sonoma County Zinfandel from Dry Creek Valley. The wine was still showing fruit but offered a lot of tertiary flavors. Drink them if you've got them, but you will enjoy it. Note the 12.5% alcohol by the way. You don't see that from Dry Creek Valley too often these days, but such low levels weren't necessarily the rule "back in the day." There were plenty of 15+% alcohol Zins made in the 1970's.

ballentine

Meanwhile, back in Napa Valley, Ballentine's superlative 2010 Block 9 Reserve Zinfandel was rich but balanced with with a lengthy finish.

rock-wall

The 2010 Rock Wall Reserve Zinfandel Hendry Vineyard was powerfully palatable.

frank-family

So too the 2010 Frank Family Vineyards Zinfandel Napa Valley.

outpost

The 2010 Outpost Howell Mountain Zinfandel was a barrel-sample, but I'd be happy to drink some tonight. It offered lip-smacking dark berries and succulent powdery tannins.

rosamunde

Speaking of succulent, I double-dog dare you not to smile after a bit of this Rosamunde Sausage Grill Lamb Merguez Sausage Sandwich with Mango Chutney and Sauerkraut.

CCSF

City College of San Francisco's Culinary Art and Hospitality Studies Dept earned an "A" for their 5-Spice Duck Confit Sliders.

shelton-wild-thing

Carol Shelton Wines invited us to do the Wild Thing. The 2009 Wild Thing Old Vine Zinfandel, Mendocino County is full-bodied and oozes jammy fruit.

shelton-monga-zin

This 2009 Carol Shelton Monga Zin from old vines in Cucamonga Valley (between Los Angeles and San Bernadino) was the first wine I've ever tried from that area. It was really good, balanced but showing plenty of perfectly ripe fruit.

seghesio

If anyone should know how to pair Zinfandel with food, it's the house chefs at Zinfandel-specialist Seghesio Family Vineyards in Healdsburg. They didn't disappoint. Seghesio's smokey Signature Ribs had just the right ratio of chew to tenderness and a light touch with the caramelized sauce contributed lip-smacking flavor that didn't compete with the wine.

ruths-chris

The Lamb Lollipops with Zinfandel Dem-Glace from Ruths' Chris Steak House may be the best lamb chops I've ever had, and I've had some lamb chops. They were almost melt-in-your-mouth tender, flavorful and perfectly seasoned.

harney-lane-lizzy-james

You can't go far in Lodi without tripping over an old Zinfandel vineyard, which might lead us to take them for granted. We shoudn't. Many have been torn up over the years, as in other regions, and it's only been in the past decade or so that a broad audience has begun to grasp the quality and character old vines deliver. How proud would the farmers of a century ago be to know that their work was still bringing joy to people?

Harney Lane is surrounded by old vine Zinfandel, including the Lizzy James Vineyard. The 2010 from that site was so good my camera practically took this picture by itself.

klinker-brick

People say, "Zinfandel can't age." And even people who've enjoyed an old Zin here and there would scoff at the idea that Zinfandel from Lodi can age rather than just get old. In reality, most wine can't age and isn't designed to do so. But, as with many other red wines, Zinfandel made from good vineyards and vinified for ageability can improve with some years in bottle. Yes, even Lodi Zinfandel. This 2003 Klinker Brick Old Ghost Zinfandel Lodi, the winery's first vintage, was absolutely killer and easily one of my favorite wines of the night.

alebrijes

One of my favorite bites of the night was this little ball of happiness, a Chicken Croquette with Chipotle Aioli from Alebrijes Bistro in Lodi. The croquette was crispy on the outside, almost fluffy inside and the chipotle aioli offered just the right level of "pop."

m2

My penultimate sip was Layne Montgomery's 2010 M2 Soucie Vineyard Select Block Zinfandel, a gorgeous, powerful wine with fine, powdery tannins and flavors of sweet berries, ripe red cherry, chocolate mint and oak-spice accents. The finish held up all the way over to the Ravenswood table where I got my Belloni Vineyard nightcap.

 

Follow NorCalWine on Twitter for breaking wine news, information on events and more. Become a fan and join the NorCal Wine community on Facebook. Also check out our comprehensive Northern California winery listings. They are very useful for planning a tasting trip or just getting in touch with a winery.

This article is original to NorCalWine.com. Copyright 2013 NorCal Wine. All rights reserved.

Comments   

 
Martin D. Redmond
#1 Martin D. Redmond 2013-02-10 13:57
Wow! Great photos Fred! They brought me back to Epicuria...and man! That lamb lollipop!
Quote
 
 
www.rycroftllp.Co.uk
#2 www.rycroftllp.Co.uk 2014-04-07 20:32
What a material of un-ambiguity annd preserveness of precious knowledge on the topic of unexpefted feelings.
Quote
 

Add comment


Security code
Refresh