2009 Orin Swift "Saldo" Zinfandel
Dense in structure, but shows finesse, with toasty black cherry and grilled anise aromas that lead to ripe, zesty flavors of blackberry, espresso and fresh pepper. Best from 2013 through 2017.
Dave Phinney knows Zinfandel, and after years of making the incredibly popular blend, the Prisoner, he's parlayed his access to top Zin vineyards into this single-varietal bottling comprised of fruit from such sites as Aparicio, Bismark, Duarte, Eagle Point, Frediani, Grist, Haywood, Heitz Ink Grade, Korte, Monte Rosso and Pato, among others. Named Saldo, which in Spanish can refer to balance, but also can loosely be translated to mean "from here and there" this is a wine from here and there in California. A great follow up to the 2008, which was one of the Wine Spectator's Top 100 wines of 2010, the 2009 smells like spring at the farmers' market, with aromas of ripe Gaviota and Seascape strawberries tempting you from every angle. There's a hint of spice on the nose, too, though everything turns decidely darker on the palate, with rich black fruits, mouthcoating tannins and bright acidity. A fresh, sultry wine to enjoy in the near term with a steak salad or roasted chicken.