Tuesday, March 15, 2011

25 Years of Fiore Winery and Fiore Zinnavo

Everyone knows that I have a soft spot in my heart for Mike Fiore. It was one of the first Maryland wines I tried that I liked, and since then I have tasted many more. And it's Fiore Winery's 25th Anniversary. But for me, Zinnavo is a special experience.

Zinnavo was or is, which ever you prefer, Maryland's first bi-coastal proprietary blend. Over the years the blend has changed, with differing amounts. The blend I most recently tasted is made up of 75 % Maryland Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc with 25% Zinfandel. The wine is aged 18 months in a combination of Hungarian and Pennsylvanian oak barrels. It is then blended together in a single stainless steel tank and bottled without filtering.

The wine is a wonderful blend, with a deep, dark maroon color, though it still has an elegant clarity about it. The nose is huge with dark cherry, plum, and a hint of prune, maybe a hint of saddle leather? The flavors come through on the palate, with big, dark red fruits, and a nice balance of acidity and tannins, with a nice big finish. This is a wine that has definitely improved over the years into an elegant, and incredible red.

But don't just listen to me...how about the many judges that have put this wine up over the years so consistently. Here's the last few years medals & accolades:
Silver Medal 2008 Maryland Governor's Cup Competition
Silver Medal 2007 Maryland Governor's Cup Competition
Silver medal 2007 Amenti Del Vino international wine competition
Silver medal 2006 Amenti del Vino Wine Competition
Silver medal 2006 Tasters Guild International
Silver medal 2005 2005 Los Angeles County Fair-Wines of the World Competition
Silver medal 2005 Maryland Governor's Cup Competition
Silver medal 2003 Amenti del Vino International Wine Competition
Bronze Medal, 2010 Maryland Winemasters Choice Awards
Bronze Medal 2006 Maryland Governor's Cup Competition
Bronze medal 2005 Tasters Guild International
Bronze medal 2004 Maryland Governor's Cup
Bronze medal 2003 International Eastern Wine Competition

Mike and Rose, congratulations on 25 years! And congrats on Zinnavo, you've done it again!