As we approach Memorial Day, the unofficial start of grilling season (although we grill pretty much year-round here in coastal California), it’s a good idea to have some great zinfandel on hand. Zinfandel, of course, goes hand in hand with grilled meat – or vegetables, for the vegetarians in the crowd.
Ridge Vineyards is one of California’s top producers of zin, and the East Bench bottling, from the Dry Creek Valley appellation, shows why. Unlike many Ridge zins, which are blends, this one is 100 percent zinfandel. It’s bright and brambly, with lively berry, hints of tobacco and spice and a moderately tannic finish. It sells for $32.