Cosentino 2000 Tenero Rosso Lodi Red Wine ($10.00)
Although the conventional wisdom has long dismissed California's agricultural Central Valley as the source of forgettable "jug wines," there's increasing evidence that specific pockets such as Lodi can produce more serious stuff. This traditional "field blend" from the region's Norman Knoll Vineyard, an unexpected mix of Napa Gamay, Mourvedre, Zinfandel and Sangiovese, stands out. Zinlike in character, it's a clear, rather bright cherry red, with fresh mixed-berry aromas, ripe and full. There's a load of raspberry and strawberry flavor on the palate, full-bodied yet juicy and refreshing. It doesn't seem as strongly alcoholic as the label discloses (14.6%), something to keep in mind when its luscious, up-front fruit makes you want to gulp it. US Importer: (Jul 3, 2003)

FOOD MATCH: Juicy lamb-beef burgers show it at its best.

WEB LINK: http://www.cosentinowinery.com/

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