The Abacus dining room broke out in a hushed murmur at a recent wine and cheese pairing when Deerfield Ranch Winery Winemaker Robert Rex said the velvety smooth Zinfandel we were imbibing was 17.5 percent alcohol. Reverberations of “but it’s not hot,” and “there’s no burn, how it that possible?” bounced around the room before Rex explained his Buchignani Garcia Vineyard Zinfandel was made with a specialized yeast that can live and thrive in juice with up to 18 percent alcohol. Adding to the comlexity, Rex said the vines were 115 years old giving the wine an elegance and body. This Zinfandel is the reason the varietal is so close to my heart. It’s big, bold, and unexpected. I’m still locating where you’ll be able to buy it locally, but you can get it online here.