A Wine Lover’s Weekly Review Of $10 Wine – A Barefoot White Zinfandel Signed California

We are heading into the last roundup for rose wine this season. In case you don’t know, white Zinfandel is a rose wine made from that feisty red grape. The Barefoot Winery started in 1965 in a garage in Albany, California, a small town close to Berkeley. You may want to visit their website/Facebook account to get an idea of this company, which, in their words, teamed up with Gallo in 2005. The companion wine is a Cotes de Provence, France rose costing about three times as much.

OUR WINE REVIEW POLICY All wines that we taste and review are purchased at the full retail price.

Wine Reviewed Barefoot White Zinfandel, 2009 9.5 % alcohol about $5 (I paid $10).

Let’s start by quoting the marketing materials. “Tasting Note: Clear bright pale pink; aromas of strawberry, lime, rhubarb, and candy floss with floral nuances; off-dry, with sweet strawberry, rhubarb pie, and candy floss flavors; tart rhubarb on finish. Serving Suggestion: Drink well chilled with Mexican cuisine, finger foods, salads, and fruit desserts.” And now for my review.

At the first sips this wine was far too sweet but it did have good acidity and lasting rhubarb. I started with Japanese rice crackers that lightly tamed the sweetness. And a Wasabi pea allowed the spices come through. The initial meal was an omelet enhanced with majoram, garlic powder, dried basil leaves, black pepper, and a Middle Eastern spice mix. Now the liquid was home to a fight between strawberries and excessive sugar. I’m not sure who won that mini-battle, but I know it wasn’t me. When paired with a white bean humus the taste of candy came through. The accent of roasted garlic tapenade finally tamed the libation’s sweetness.

The following meal featured a boxed baked Ziti Siciliano and now the wine offered light, refreshing acidity and raspberry candy. With a garden grown fresh tomato the wine deepened and sweetened. Dessert was Haagen-Dazs coffee ice cream. In response this drink was sweet and syrupy and offered good acidity. It’s not often that a wine pairs well with ice cream. Does it matter?

My final meal centered on a store-bought barbecued chicken leg. Rosie was sweet and reminded me of a slightly acidic strawberry/raspberry soft drink. Potatoes roasted in chicken fat boldened the wine and it inched away from soft drink status. When paired with zesty guacamole this wine picked up some of the dish’s spiciness. Dessert, bittersweet Swiss chocolate, overwhelmed the drink which did respond with some raspberries.

Final verdict. Never again. I had to pay $10 but wouldn’t buy this wine at the Internet price of $5. I don’t like my soft drinks too sweet. And I really don’t feel the need to pair ice cream with wine. I may give the winery another chance; ten of their wines including a bubbly are offered in my area.

Levi Reiss has authored or co-authored ten computer and Internet books, but drinking fine Iwine with good company. He loves teaching computer classes at an Ontario French-language community college. His global wine website www.theworldwidewine.com features a weekly review of $10 wines. His Italiian  travel website is http://www.travelitalytravel.com .

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