JC Van Staden La Tau Zinfandel 2013

JC Van Staden La Tau Zinfandel 2013
Lodi, CA


Didn’t know a wine could have an identity crisis? This zin smells wild like a syrah with spice and a lot of bacon. But it tastes like a merlot, all sweet raspberry and gentle spice. Your friend who’s afraid of heavy reds will love it, so use it to pull a fast one on them.

My Score: rating_chicken11

My 50/100 Quini Profile:

JC Van Staden Quini

FYI, this is a NakedWines.com bottle, from the All-American Highest-Rated Case. You can get it here. Or you can always make use of a $100 off first-time costumer voucher for NakedWines.com by clicking on this link instead.

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Sonoma Valley Portworks Petite Sirah Port 2007

Sonoma Valley Portworks Petite Sirah Port 2007
Clarksburg, CA


During my trip last spring to Petaluma, I picked up this bottle of port in a surge of jubilation that I had found a winery specializing in dessert wines (613 2nd Street in the Foundry Wharf building).


Plenty of wineries offer one or a handful of ports in their collection, but few give all their attention to after dinner drinks. Sonoma Valley Portworks makes sherry, grappas, and wine-infused vinegars in addition to port.


The typical list in their tasting room includes a sampling of everything but the grappa. Which means I need to work on getting them to offer grappa tastings too! Co-owner Caryn Reading did our pouring, and she was incredibly sweet and eager to help us plan a perfect day in Petaluma. I’m sure she’d be open to some arm-twisting…

The SVP Petite Sirah Port 2007 reminds me of biting into my first cherry cordial candy—the ones people either hate or love at Christmas time. The wine’s strong alcohol heat is akin to the candy’s syrup dribbling down your chin, a minor inconvenience endured for a sweet, indulgent treat.

I gave it a 72/100, which earns it an avocado.


My full Quini profile:

Sonoma Vally Portworks Quini

Other Bloggers’ Thoughts:

There are plenty of reviews available for SVP’s ARIS port, but not for this little guy.

Reviewed 22 August 14.

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NakedWines.com Advertising

You may have noticed the little advertisement for $100 in free wine that’s been on the site recently—it’s right about there →.

If you click on it and make a purchase or sign up to become an Angel at NakedWines.com, I’ll make a commission.

Receive $100 Off a $160 Order of 6 or More 750ml Bottles of Wine. First Time Customers Only.

Yep, you can click that one, too.

That’s, of course, a big reason why I agreed to host the ad, but I had more motivating factors than hopefully making a few bucks to justify my food writing to myself. And the biggest of those factors is the Angel program. As part of the crowdfunding movement, the NakedWines.com Angel program enables a small group of winemakers to fund their passion projects more easily. Angels pledge $40/month to the program, and the winemakers use those funds to make their wines. Then, when ready, those winemakers offer that wine back to NakedWines.com.

Naked Wines circle pic

Anybody can purchase bottles from the website, but Angels get first dibs and roughly half off the price that regular users of NakedWines.com are charged. Or as NakedWines.com more eloquently explains, “NakedWines.com is here to make expensive wines accessible to normal people. We don’t do that by strong-arming our suppliers, like some of the big supermarkets. We do it by funding independent winemakers to set up their own business – and we get preferential prices in return.”

And those winemakers? Ever heard of Randall Grahm? Ken Dais? Daryl Groom? These stars and many more provide wines to NakedWines.com outside of their usual labels. As more Angels sign up, NakedWines.com brings on more winemakers, thus gaining more wine so that they increase the size of the Angels program. That’s pretty exciting! And did I mention the free bottle of wine each month?

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