Chris’ February Pick: Decoy Zinfandel 2008

Starting things off is never easy, which is why I picked a wine that’s associated to some other wines I’ve tasted in the past. Decoy is the “value” brand in the Duckhorn family of wines, which when considered with its name makes me wonder if I’m a sucker for buying a “decoy” or my tongue is supposed to be fooled into thinking it’s an expensive wine. Duckhorn please advise.

After two busy days at work, Linda opened the bottle and poured two glasses. Overall it was a solid wine. A good amount of ripe fruity flavors but also some earth tones that I think balanced things out. I thought it would go well with a saucy sausage dinner or some kind of rich game-like meat. Definitely impressed, but couldn’t help but think I could find something similar for less.

The next night I ventured to our local Mexican restaurant for some $2 tacos – love to Maya – in hopes of decoying the Decoy with cheap eats. Well, the tacos came through nicely, but the wine changed personalities on me. A lesson in wine and oxygen – when combined, things change – too much and you’re screwed. Next time, opened wine needs to stay in the fridge (even the reds). Regardless, the match of the wine and the carnitas taco just didn’t work. Even if the wine was its first day self, I still didn’t match it well.

Now for fun, let’s look at what the review on has to say about the Decoy Zin.

  • Dark tones of iodine, sassafras and blackberries meld in this zin’s cool, spicy intensity
  • Flavors include raspberry jam, cherry-vanilla cream, cinnamon and white pepper
  • Highlighting classic Zinfandel elements of raspberry, strawberry jam, white pepper, cedar and spice

Ha, seriously? Such fluffy language. I didn’t taste most of that. And, I thought iodine was a poison.

$21.99 retail ($19.99 when we bought it)

Chris' Pick, Red Wine, Zinfandel

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