There is always some genuine excitement when the delivery person has me sign for my package from A Taste of Monterey. It was our first wine club and the only one for ages and always a delight. We just kind of haphazardly discovered them when we were wandering around the Cannery Row district of Monterey, California. To be quite candid we were there to dine at the legendary The Sardine Factory and the appetizer that we shared will be forever etched in our memory, as well as a tour that we received of this great place. Since we were there, we were just like all of the other tourist and wandered around. We walked into an art gallery, with no intention of buying and left knowing that our living room will forever be that much classier for purchasing a Hirschfeld registered piece of Nick and Nora Charles and Asta (some of you may know as William Powell, Myrna Loy and Asta). We also found a tasting room for a winery that we also bought wine from, and then we found A Taste of Monterey and their wine shop et al.
All I know is that we have been getting deliveries every quarter for at least twenty years, and when we signed up, we were ecstatic that they could ship to us, because we were considered a felony state and a social pariah, until the great case of Granholm vs. Heald and Granholm lost and Michiganders could get wine delivered to their doorstep. When we joined, they were offering two different wine clubs, one that had two bottles delivered monthly or three bottles delivered quarterly. The difference being that the quarterly shipment was of their better wine offerings and the monthly was more popular priced. We figured that it was best to get their best wines that probably would never get to Michigan anyways, because of the archaic three-tiered system that has been in place with the wine distributors since Prohibition ended, and we have been happy ever since.
The first bottle that I grabbed out of the shipping carton was Mesa Del Sol Monterey County Zinfandel 2013. I mean this was the first Zinfandel wine that we had received in the twenty some years of delivery, mostly it has been Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Rhone type wines. Mesa Del Sol has been a favorite destination for travelers and some of the buildings on the estate go back to the 1800’s. Costa Del Sol is in the Arroyo Seco Highlands and the hot dry air was considered a haven for tuberculosis patients and even Teddy Roosevelt had stayed there. I went to the website for the winery and resort and I found another Zinfandel from Arroyo Seco, but not this Monterey County wine, yet both carry the same vintage. This wine is made for the resort by Chualar Canyon Winery in Salinas, California. I could find no production notes on this wine, but the notes accompanying the wines states it is a well-balanced wine with leather and blackberries on the nose, with overtones of currant, pepper and lavender with a long, smooth finish, and anyone that knows me, knows that is not how I describe wines. The wine had a production of two-hundred cases, and the wine is suggested to be drunk now or it has the aging potential of ten to fifteen years. It will be an interesting wine to try.