A BBQ champ: Frank Family Zinfandel
As the production of American Zinfandel wine continues to grow in all areas, it is always interesting to take a look back at one of the Napa classics, Frank Family Napa Valley Zinfandel. Once affectionately product-coded as “LPR” by the winery staff, it now has moved into the mainstream of availability.
Sure, they offer a Reserve Zinfandel, but the standard offering is quite excellent. This is especially true for outdoor cooking, or just for “cutting the dust” at the end of a long day. It continues to be an excellent “road wine” (cooler take-along) as that part of the tradition continues.
Their 2014 rendition ups the Zinfandel character with a good blast of stuff that is normally found in a bottle of their Reserve (both have a little Petit Syrah added to the blend). It starts off with a big bouquet of raspberries, traces of currant spice, and a beckoning earthiness. A distinctive dark fruit emerges in the mid-palate followed by a laid-back acidity, low tannins, rich pepper spice, and a long soft finish.
Note that when drinking these outside, and slightly chilled, the nuances in the bouquet are not as pronounced, but your mouth will not be disappointed. This is, as expected, no wimp.
When paired with a batch of slathered BBQ short ribs, it is really a great way to complement those irresistible outdoor meals during this winter/spring departure from the heat (AKA – Our Chamber of Commerce weather). Of course, with burgers, it’s just as great!