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Hot Ideas For Parties With Pizzazz

Contributed by: NAPSA

(NAPSA) - As many Gen Xers have found, adding extra sizzle to a red-letter day can be easier when they run the gamut from Z to z. That is, instead of serving the usual drinks, treat hosts or guests to a popular "alternative" wine, such as a zippy Zinfandel or luscious Shiraz.

Why? Because these fun wines are delizioso with red meat, chicken, fish and veggies. The all-American Zinfandel and the Aussie-inspired Shiraz both offer a bold, rich depth of flavors that are likely to please today's bright young things.

"That's what I like most about making these wines," states Beringer Founders' Estate Winemaker Ron Schrieve. "They're fun and they taste delicious. They have all the seriousness of great wines, with a rich, full body and layers of black fruit. But each also has subtle nuances that give them individual personalties-the spicy cracked pepper and nutmeg that frames the Zinfandel and the lofty bergamot and rosehips in the Shiraz-that perk up the senses and make these wines really stand out."

Here are a few fun facts you can use to amaze your friends when you bring these wines to a party.

  • Zinfandel was once the most planted wine varietal in California. It was nominated to be the official state fruit of California in 2002.
  • Yes, Zinfandel does come in a "red" version; in fact, Beringer's "White" Zinfandel is made from the deeply red grapes using white wine production techniques to focus the varietal's bright, fruity flavors.
  • An Italian grape called Primitivo was recently found to share the same eenetic make-up with American Zinfandel.
  • Shiraz is called "Syrah" in France; the Australians were the first to use the name "Shiraz" and put it on a bottle. The name "Shiraz" comes from the ancient town of Shiraz in Persia, where it was once thought this varietal originated.
  • When grown in warm climates, Shiraz wine is characterized by rich, dark berry and plum flavors; in cooler growing regions, it has more spicy, smokey and meaty flavors.
  • Shiraz's best buddy in blending is Cabernet Sauvignon, with many Shiraz-Cabernets being made today.

Add even more zip to your meal by starting with a great marinade: Zippy Marinade


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