Zinfandel is truly a versatile red wine. Or so was the consensus after we tasted dozens of fruit-forward, dry, smokey, sweet and savory Zins at the Good Eats & Zinfandel Pairing at Fort Mason on Jan. 27. Put on by ZAP (Zinfandel Advocates & Producers), the kickoff event to a weekend of wine tasting married 50 Zins from California and beyond with bites from 50 local eateries. A few favorites included lamb lollipops from Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse paired elegantly with Klinker Brick Winery’s “Old Ghost,” decadent porcini mushroom-filled tortellini with truffle oil from Il Davide Restaurant, and pink Champagne cupcakes from Sift Cupcake & Dessert Bar. From chocolate to hearty meat dishes to housemade jerky from Krave (think: smoked chipotle jerky paired with a spicy Mantra Winery red), the event was proof that Zinfandel pairs swimmingly with a wide array of different dishes.
In its 20th year, the ZAP Zinfandel Festival—billed as the world’s most comprehensive showing of Zins—continued over the weekend with a Friday night Flights party and 1920s-style Meet the Winemakers dinner, as well as a Grand Zinfandel Tasting and silent auction on Saturday. For more information on ZAP and to view a list of upcoming events, visit Zinfandel.org.