This week – on January 17-19, 2019 – marks the annual San Francisco celebration of Zinfandel put on each year by ZAP (Zinfandel Advocates & Producers). Not every producer of California Zinfandel will be there, but most of them will be, and Zinfandel lovers will have an opportunity to taste and compare from among the very best.
One question, which inevitably comes up whenever there is a big exposition focused on one varietal category: How are California Zinfandels tasting these days?
Then there is the other question, pertinent to us in Lodi Viticultural Area, which is: How do Lodi grown Zinfandels stack up against other California Zinfandels these days?Continue »
Why is this weekend so well loved? Let us count the ways.
• A chance to drop in on no less than 54 participating wineries (well, at least as many as you humanly can) and
• Enjoy exclusive tastings (from the barrel, verticals of vintages, etc.),
• Lots of edible treats (chocolates and non-chocolaty),
• Live music (at many wineries, including room to dance with your fellow wine and chocolate lovers), and
• Lots of Instagram-worthy moments and settings (including photo booths and backdrops) nearly everywhere you go!
Imagine the possibilities, if not with your main squeeze, maybe with your besties (or all of them!)...Continue »
Since grape morphology – that is, the size and weight of clusters and berries, color and phenols in skins, proportions of acidity, and all the factors that determine structure, aromas and flavors, and ultimately, the quality and style of wines – is directly impacted by vineyard locations and the decisions of growers and winemakers, it is never surprising to find that terroir (i.e. “sense of place”) often trumps varietal expectations in resulting wines...Continue »
The months of August, September and October are the climatic peaks of each growing season in Lodi wine country, as they are in all the wine regions of the Northern Hemisphere. These are the months when wine grapes reach full maturation, thus ready for harvest. It is also the time of year when we rush out into the vineyards to poke, prod, taste and photograph the grapes just before or during peak ripeness. And this is how we learn more about exactly how the individual characteristics of each variety are impacted by factors such as terroir (the French word for "sense of place," determined by vineyard location), grower and winemaker decisions, and above all, the whims of Mother Nature (i.e. peculiarities of each "vintage").
Ultimately, all the fine wines of the world are defined mostly by the grapes that go into them. It is why, for instance, an Albariño produces a white wine that is almost always lighter, sharper, more flowery, citrusy and flinty than a Chardonnay. Yet an Albariño grown in its native Rías Baixas, Spain is not exactly the same as an Albariño grown in Lodi. Why should it be? Rías Baixas is over 5,600 miles - an entire continent and ocean - away from Lodi...Continue »