The bottle says 14.5% alcohol. My nose and eyeballs suspect if might be well north of 15%. This is a big wine, with brawny red fruits, a bowl of mixed cherries ranging from barely ripe to nearly black and strawberries to match, fighting it out with blackberries in a ring made of American Oak, refereed by a box of raisins. Sweet dusty tannins abound, but there is enough acid to match. This might settle down and blend together with a few years in the cellar. It is more a stand-alone snack than a food wine, but if you must, match it with a very sloppy cheese steak sandwich. Recommended.

WHO: Ridge Vineyards
WHAT: Zinfandel (74%), Carignane (17%), Petite Sirah (6%), Alicante Bouschet (2%), Mourvèdre (1%)
WHEN: 2009
WHERE: Sonoma County, California
HOW MUCH: $35 (Media sample)
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