With the weather turning nicer here in Alberta, this becomes a challenging time of year for me. You see, I am really a full-blooded red drinker at heart. And as it warms, it is a bit challenging to consume the big zesty California Zin’s which I have been loving lately under a hot sun. So I went in search of something similar but perhaps more… summer-y.
Well, I found it. By dumb luck. This Primitivo (Primitivo is genetically equivalent to Zinfandel) stood out in a local shop because it was the only Primitivo they had. And at $21, was a good price, so I thought what the heck, let’s give it a go. And it’s delicious.
The nose is a bit reserved but a few swirls and I got dark, rustic cherry notes with a touch of baking spice, revealing some of the “baked” or “jammy” characteristics Zinfandel is well known for.
On the palate there is a ton of complexity – ripe, juicy dark cherry starts you off, cocoa, tea and easy tannins settles you in and, finally, a pinch of clove finishes your journey.
In all of this, there was a distinct reason I had summer in mind for this wine. It definitely did not have the big, rich weight a Zinfandel would carry. It sustained your interest more with fresh tension than with density and after a bit of research it is obvious why: this sees no oak contact. A-ha! There it is. The summer barbecue wine!