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Alexander Valley Vineyards Sonoma County ‘Temptation’ Zinfandel 2013

It’s still prime barbecue season, and for my money nothing pairs better with spice-laden, sauce-slathered ribs or chicken than fruity, spicy zinfandel. The Alexander Valley Vineyards Sonoma County “Temptation” Zinfandel 2013 ($15) is entirely worthy of a barbecue, with its bold dark-berry flavors, tropical-spice notes, trademark toastiness and cocoa elements. The texture and finish are surprisingly smooth, thanks in part to spot-on semisoft tannins. A bit of petite sirah (5 percent) adds color and some plum notes to this hearty red. Besides almost anything off the grill short of seafood, this wine works all fall and winter with roasted or braised meat or veggies.

Available at Morelli’s, Northfield and Eden Prairie munis, Glen Lake, Knollwood, Midway, Liquor Works and others.

Bill Ward