© by Sheral Schowe
Since my first trip to family-owned and operated ZD Winery, I have been a fan of their world-class chardonnay, pinot noir, and cabernet sauvignon. ZD is consistently awarded high 80s and 90s in well-respected wine publications, competitions, and gourmet magazines.
The founders of ZD were two former aerospace engineers, Gino Zepponi and Norman de Leuze, who pooled their resources in 1968 to develop wines similar to those from the Burgundy region of France. Today, the de Leuze family, including each of their children, Robert, Julie, and Brett, continue to produce wines with a personal, hands-on approach.
After our University of Utah Wine Education group toured the winery, we enjoyed a sumptuous meal and tasted each of ZDís current releases of chardonnay, pinot noir, and cabernet sauvignon. We saw the first bottle of Abacus, a blend of the majority of ZDís vintage cabernets, come off the line. We were able to purchase that first bottle, signed by the winemaker.
ZD chardonnays are aromatic with melon, citrus, roasted grain and toasty oak. The delicious rich flavors are grapefruit, pineapple and apricot. The finish is intense with honey, lemon, and spicy oak.
The cabernets are smooth and rich, full of currant, berry, cherry, vanilla, and a little tobacco. The mouth-feel is velvety, with a long-lasting finish.
The ZD wines available in Utah include the 1996 Cabernet ($38.25), the 1995 Cabernet Reserve ($60.30), the 1995 Library Selection Chardonnay ($34.25), 1997 Chardonnay Reserve ($45.30), and the regular Chardonnay 1996 in magnum ($53.50). ZDís pinot noirs were scooped up as quickly as they arrived last year and the current release has not hit the wine stores yet.
To keep up with ZD wines, you can visit their website at www.zdwines.com.
Nov. 4, 1999