Zuzu is a lively tapas restaurant in downtown Napa, popular with my friends for its tasty dishes and festive vibe at night. During the day, it’s much quieter in the restaurant, but the food is just as delicious. It’s a great spot to catch up with a colleague for lunch, which is what I did recently.
I sometimes find tapas tricky to order—figuring out the formula of ordering enough small plates, picking enough varied flavors, and satisfying everyone at the table. This time I left the ordering up to my companion, and instead focused on the wine list. I was looking for a Spanish white, and was happy to see the Bodegas y Viñedos Shaya Verdejo Rueda Old Vines 2009 on the list for $9 a glass. Verdejo is indigenous to the Rueda region of Spain, and I know it as a very food-friendly wine, typically medium-bodied with crisp acidity and interesting mineral notes.
This version was lovely, with citrus notes and terrific peppery, minerally details, a medium body (as expected) and a nice juicy acidity. I rated it 87 points, non-blind. It was a great match with all of the plates we enjoyed, especially the tortilla Española, a rich and creamy potato and sweet onion omelet.
WineSpectator.com members: Read the original blind-tasting review for Bodegas y Viñedos Shaya Verdejo Rueda Old Vines 2009 (88, $15).
• Plus, get scores and tasting notes for more recently rated Verdejo whites from Spain.