Wine Review: 2008 Orin Swift “The Prisoner” Red Blend

Image8/13/2012 rated 91 points: Was preparing baby back ribs with a spicy rub and figured it was time to let the Prisoner escape from my cellar! I have had a few Orin Swift wines in the past and have always found them to be great tasting wines. This one followed suit and was a perfect match for my ribs. The Prisoner is a red meritage that is mostly red zinfandel but also has cabernet sauvignon, syrah, and about 4 other red grapes blended in. On sight, this wine was garnet, very inky in color. No light was shining through this wine! On the nose, ripe black currants, smoke, herbs, and pepper filled my senses. On the palate, this wine was full bodied, rich, and heavier mouthfeel. Lush blackberry, blueberry, peppercorn, cedar, and a hint of cherry and smoke. It had a nice long, robust finish. I did not decant this wine but kept the cork off for about 30 minutes. On my 2nd glass, it opened up further to show more ripe cherry, dried fruit, oak and an even longer, silkier finish. Other foods this would pair with would be a sharp or pepper style cheese, grilled steak, barbecue pork ribs (with a spicy dry rub!), pasta with a spicy tomato meat sauce, or an Eggplant and Peppers Rigatoni.

This is a wonderful tasting wine and will pair with heavier, spicier foods. Great structure and tannins with a long finish. Robust but with some nice lush fruit to balance. We did enjoy the Orin Swift “The Prisoner” Red Blend and give it an A on the SiNoTas scale. Lots of layers, lots of great flavors, and a big, robust finish! This wine is tasting perfect right now. I honestly don’t think it will get any better with age. If you have a 2008, I would drink it within the next 12 months at the most. WineSplashing!!

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