Tuesday, November 17, 2009
What's the HoseMaster Drinking?
Seghesio 2006 Zinfandel Cortina Dry Creek Valley
I am an unabashed fan of Zinfandel, and always have been. I like that it's bombastic and unrelenting and unashamed of being way too much most of the time. It's like I have a twin! And I'm head-pruned too. "Cortina" is the soil type in the Seghesio Zinfandel Vineyard in Dry Creek Valley. (The wine was not named for the Ford Cortina, a car that, ironically, was dirt cheap.) The 2006 Cortina Zinfandel is an interesting wine. It started with a very ripe, almost late harvest, extracted, gutsy aroma that concerned me. But on the palate it showed lovely balance, some chalky finishing tannins and gorgeous fruit, where I was expecting a clumsier, over-the-top kind of Zin from the nose. This seems reflective of the 2006 vintage, the extended heat at vintage's end giving it the late harvest characteristics in the nose, but the age of the vines at the Cortina vineyard maintaining a lovely balance and freshness anyway. (I had heard of plans to blend the Cortina Zin with some Cabernet from Stag's Leap Wine Cellars in Napa in order to create a lovely "Cortina Fay" bottling, but, luckily, those were scrapped--like that joke should have been.) What you end up with is a Zinfandel with black raspberry and a pinch of white pepper flavors, with nice fruit intensity, elegant, supple, chalky tannins, and plenty of guts. I tend to like Seghesio's Cortina Zinfandel because in most vintages, including this one, it shows the power and eloquence of Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel.
The HoseMaster Score 706,865 Points
Disclaimer: All performers in this review were over 18 at the time of filming. Any resemblance to actual wine criticism is purely coincidental.