Laurel Glen 2002 REDS California Red Wine ($9.99)
Inky blackish-purple in color, this California blend of Zinfandel, Petite Sirah and Carignan blends flavors of the Old World and the New: Black plums and smoke, a heady whiff of flowers and a dash of pepper. Big and ripe in flavor, the back label calls it "opulent," and I'll buy that. The plushy fruit almost makes it seem soft at first, but there's a firm core of acidity to hold it together and make it an excellent food match. US Importer: (Feb 3, 2005)

FOOD MATCH: An easy match with Mediterranean fare, it went very well indeed with a variation on a Piemontese classic, duck breast filling in for hare in a thick fennel-celery puree over wide pasta.



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