Tamales and Zinfandel

We had intermittent showers on our return from Jeff’s this morning, turning into full rain showers as we approached home. It’s great to finally have real rain. Tonight’s supper on a cloudy, rainy day was Johnny’s Cash Store tamales - red chile chicken, green chile chicken, and red chile pork; with chips, salsa & guacamole from Maria’s, and Coyote Cantina Fire-Roasted Red and Green Chile Salsas. For wine we had a young Zinfandel - 2002 Ridge Dusi Ranch. It had sufficient earthy berry fruit and acidity to not be overwhelmed by the chiles in the tamales and salsas. It was a good supper on a cool day.

A zin huh?? Even 2002. Dick your wine pairings are always amazing to me. And having sat at your table, I know they work. I would have expected margaritas.

I would have thought that a 2002 would still be a bit tannic and have some reasonably high alcohol to have clashed with any heat from the tamales themselves. Were the tamales mildly spiced or was the zin not what I imagined?

The zin’s tannins weren’t evident; the fruit was big enough to work with the spicy tamales; and the alcohol wasn’t too much in evidence; even though it was over 16%. The chiles in the tamales were quite hot - the red chicken was the hottest and was good with the chunks of avocado in the guacamole; the green chicken was next, and the pork was the least hot, but still spicy. We didn’t have Margaritas since were still recovering from Friday night.

Then for dessert, while watching practice for the Monaco Grand Prix (via TiVo) we had Piroulines (French Vanilla, Hazelnut Chocolate, & Dark Chocolate) with 375ml of La Familgia di Robert Mondavi Vin Santo, a Vin Santo light - but still nice with the Piroulines.

I suspect, that with my aversion to ypung tannins, that my reaction to the combination of tannins and chiles is different than most. I remember at St. Estephe in Manhattan Beach CA in the mid-80s, when John Sedlar was changing from French to Northern New Mexican; that I enjoyed young CalCabs, Dunn and Spotteswood, with his chile dishes. That’s the only time that I’ve happily consumed young tannic CalCabs.