Food & Wine

Vina Matela Crljenak Kastelanski Zinfandel Review

The Vina Matela Crljenak Kastelanski Zinfandel 2015 showed up at my door this afternoon. I was expecting it because the vineyards’ public relations practitioner reached out to me to see if I would consider reviewing. She knew that I had reviewed wines in the past on my blog and when she offered, I said, “sure.”

I love wine. If I’m in Italy, I just want to drink Italian wines when I get back. If I’m in France, it’s the French ones for me. And, when I’m in Napa or Sonoma Valley, I will only drink California wines. I become very loyal to various regions. However, when I tasted the Vina Matela Crljenak Kastelanski from Croatia, I absolutely loved it. (And I’m not saying this because I got this for review. I wholeheartedly believe it!)

A little background:

After a little digging on the Internet, I found that Crljenak Kastelanski is the original name of the grape, Zinfandel. I had no idea that the first Zinfandel was founded in Croatia. Yet, today, there are only a handful of vineyards there.

Vina Matela is the winery, which is situated in the middle and south Dalmatia, which is the coastal region in Croatia, directly across from central Italy. These grapes grow near the Adriatic Sea.

Now about the wine:

The color is a deep burgundy red. It has a strong berry and leather smell and a flavorful taste. In your mouth, you can taste the pepper, blueberry, and leather. The smell is bold. The wine is bold, just the way I love it!

The Vina Matela Crljenak Kastelanski Zinfandel would be a perfect companion to a pasta meal or a nice piece of beef or lamb.

When you drink the wine, you can taste all the flavors and at first, it’s hard to differentiate. Yet, with a few sips, you can distinguish the pepper, berries, and leather.

My takeaway:

If I saw this bottle in the wine store, I would not put it in my cart. However, after tasting and experiencing it, I would now, go out of my way to get another bottle!

The Vina Matela Crljenak Kastelanski Zinfandel would make an ideal gift for a close friend. It would be a great bottle to have in your collection. I loved it and can’t say enough about it!

You can buy it (or request it) from your local wine store. The bottle is $35.

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