Back to Work with a California Zin

2010 has started off as a crazy, but fun year. The first week of the New Year was a busy one at work because everyone was ready to jump right into the next big set of projects after having time off for the holidays. After that first week of planning, though, I was out of the office on vacation. Hubby and I went to Antigua for a week of warm, tropical weather and beautiful, sandy beaches. We had a great time relaxing, reading, sightseeing, and, in the middle of it all, celebrating our 3rd wedding anniversary. I even had a chance to taste 3 of Sandals (& Beaches) resorts limited edition wines, which I’ll review in a separate post. Unfortunately, since Hubby and I haven’t won the lottery and we’re not independently wealthy, we were both back to work yesterday. I came back to work to find an overloaded email box, reports that need to be read and commented on, meeting requests that need to be answered, and several speaking engagements that require preparation. I absolutely love my job, but no matter how much I love it, the first day back from vacation was simply not fun. I ended up staying a little late to make sure things were organized, but, after that, I was ready to go home, open a comforting bottle of wine, eat dinner, and just crash on the couch. My bottle of Lolonis Zinfandel was practically calling my name.

The 2005 Lolonis Zinfandel (winery, snooth) was made with organically grown Zinfandel grapes, where ladybugs (not chemicals) were used for pest control. The wine had a medium-to-dark ruby color with big legs that clung to the side of the glass. On the nose, there were big, juicy blackberries and dark plums, followed cedar, smoke, and a touch of earthiness. In the mouth, the wine had a spiciness that turned into blackberry jam, with a touch of smoke on the finish. The wine was very dry, with low-to-medium acidity and medium tannins.

Is this worth a glass after work? It’s worth more than one! What are you waiting for? At $18, the Lolonis was a solid, affordable Zinfandel that perfectly paired with grilled steak. On its own, it was enjoyable, although it could have used a touch more body. However, when paired with a soy-sesame marinated steak (the marinade recipe is from Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything), and the wine left me practically giddy with happiness. It was the perfect pairing, as the combination toned down a little of the spiciness in the wine, while helping make the berry flavors in the wine and the soy sauce flavor of the marinade stand out.

A special thanks to my in-laws for introducing me to the wine! The bottle was part of my Christmas present, and they definitely picked a wine that I will buy again.

Overall: 4.5 Corks

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