Evenus Zinfandel Port

Maker: Candlewood Cellars, Graton, California, USAwpid-2015-05-20-20.31.44.jpg.jpeg

Place of origin: Paso Robles AVA, California, USA

Vintage: 2003

Style: Fortified dessert wine.

ABV: 18.1%

Purchased for $10/375 ml (Trader Joe’s)

Appearance: Dark purple with a slight brownish tinge.

Nose: Raisins, black currant jelly, plum, blueberry.

Palate: Sweet and fruity. Blueberry jam, black cherry, bit of white pepper. Fades into a slight burn.

Finish: Raisiny and warming.

Mixed: Yes, sometimes I mix my port, even when it’s not really Port. Made for a pretty bad Princeton cocktail, but that might have been down to the cheap gin I used. Did well with a squirt of lemon juice.

Parting words: I purchased this bottle many years ago and planned to open it in 2018, but I jumped the gun a bit, as you can see. I’m glad I did.

True Port, of course, has to come from Portugul, but this California version does a good job of being in the style but retaining its varietal characteristics. It has the toasty heat of a California Zin but has enough elegance and sweetness to pair well with dark chocolate or as a dessert in itself. The price is hard to beat too. Evenus 2003 Zin Port is recommended.

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