Red blend crazy: Tasting the whole Shebang
Every wine has something to catch the eye (and palate) of the buyer, but this one pushes the red blending thing in a slightly different direction. Its creators have chosen the following Zinfandel-Carignane route and melded it all together quite well.
And this technique is starting to catch on. With vitners like Ridge Vineyards and Peterson Winery already getting kudos about their “Zin-Car” bleds, the excellent results of this technique have proven to be well reeived by those who like slightly lighter reds with charecter.
One of the latest of the Zinfandel-based wines to receive accolades is Sherman & Hookers Shebang. Having a ratio of mostly Zinfandel, come to Carignane, plus other added varietals, this becomes a very interesting blend.
With wild and brambly fruit on the bouquet followed by cranberry traces and nicely balanced acidity, Shebang comes across as slightly coarse but gradually smoothes out into a soft peppery finish. Oh yes, Morgan Twain-Peterson, son of Ravenswood’s founder, Joel Peterson, knows hi Zins. He also knows how to blend them, even with Shebang, one of his more causal projects!
This combination is not too common in a lower cost wine and it shows in the ratings. The red blend is simply a great value at this point. It may not have a vintage on the label, but it should age well against any Zinfandel, and go 3-5 years with a fun change in its complexity over time.
This will always be a great wine to pair with a spicy beef stew or meaty chili recipe. The Carignane adds enough punch to the bouquet to come in clearly, even over a plate of baby-back pork ribs. No doubt about this one, it’s firmly in the “buds over to party” category.
Find it at Phoenix area AJ’s locations for under $15, a great value. There’s even enough of it out there right now to allow for some shopping around. Get that grill ready for March Madness!