Posted by Kate Phizackerley on Wednesday, August 27, 2008

I brought back a couple of half bottles of Charles Krug Lot XII zinfandel port from California.
Of the wineries I visited this was my favourite. Quiet, almost intimate. Just me and a young couple. The server was highly knowledge and loved to talk. I was on the $20 reserve wines flight: the couple were on the $10. Everytime her poured them a glass I got one too. At one time I had 3 different cabernet sauvignons in front of me - and it's easy to tell the difference.
Generally I don't like the heavy reds - or so I thought. What I discovered is that the heavy reds need to be of a high quality. The reserves where they may only produce 200 or 300 cases were rather good.
Generally I tend to go for softer reds - malbec, pinot noir or shiraz. Grapes which can successfully be used for cheap wines ie what I normally drink. Krug are known for champagnes. There weren't any in the tasting as they are produced elsewhere. (My champagne tasting came at House Chandon. I'm now certainly I really dislike their champagnes. Insipid, tasteless with a tart after taste. Not for me at all.) What they did have was a zinfandel port. Again that wasn't supposedly on the tasting list - but hey as usual we were talking and it was a natural progression to illustrate the discussion.
It's not a real port of course. But for something so glorious that's sheer pedantry.
I bought 4 half bottles of their Lot XII. It's made in a solera system and inludes 12 diferent vintages. We drank one bottle after dinner on the Sunday when the family were round for a barbecue. And it was every bit as good as I remembered. Sweet, fruity. Just wonderful!


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