Reyes 2013 Quinn’s Zin Chocolate Brownie

Reyes 2013 Quinn’s Zin Chocolate Brownie

by Beth Heiserman

Like I mentioned in my article on Sauvignon Blanc last Friday, when I was at the farmers market last week I had come across the most tasty and delicious blood oranges. All week long I’ve been enjoying this juice. Yesterday I was reading articles on my phone and came across a recipe that I had to try.  It was an olive oil chocolate cake with blood oranges.  This is a vegan recipe.  Of course I did alter the recipe that I did see. I don’t like when people add water to cakes, all it does is water down the flavor of the cakes potential. Always add buttermilk or wine or juice to increase the intensity of the flavor of the dish you are making.
Every time I think of blood orange,  I think of our 2013 Quinn’s Zin.  Reyes 2013 Quinn’s Zin has won silver medals in the 2016 Los Angeles International Wine Competition, 2017 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, plus a silver and 87 points in the 2016 Toast of the Coast Wine Competition. Also it has won a bronze medal in the 2016 San Francisco International Wine Competition.  This California old vine Zinfandel has aromas of boysenberries, cocoa and nutmeg. It has distinct flavors of blood orange, pink peppercorns, and boysenberries for a fruity finish. It pairs well with salmon with a blood orange glaze, rice pilaf and roasted broccoli.  Of course, you must finish this tasty meal with the brownie.  This can be the perfect spring dinner.  This month we are tasting Quinn’s Zin in Reyes Winery Tasting Room this month.
This chocolate cake is absolutely decadent.  The original recipe called for a glaze.  I tasted it without and it really didn’t need anything else but maybe a tad of powder sugar sprinkled for decoration.  I am not sure if I can truly call this a cake, I’m going to call it the most decadent fudge brownie I’ve ever had with amazing aromatics.
This morning as I am finishing my article for the week I had an issue with someone who upset me dearly. I spoke to two friends and they helped me calm down which I needed desperately. I then had a healthy portion of my brownie for breakfast and some of my blood orange juice and I could tell that my blood pressure was lowering by the second because the enjoyment that I had from this dessert made me forget that I was upset.
Blood Orange Chocolate Brownie


5 blood oranges  (1 cup Blood orange juice and the zest)
½ cup olive oil
1 ½ cup all purpose flour
⅔ cup dark cocoa powder, unsweetened
1 ½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2  cup organic sugar

1/2 cup Reyes 2013 Quinn’s Zin
1 ½ teaspoon cardamom

1. Zest the blood oranges and mix with the olive oil in a bowl for at least 60 minutes. I let it rest for 2 hours.
2. Preheat the oven to 350˚F
3. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, cardamom and salt.

4. Slowly mix in the sugar.
5. Then follow with the olive oil (with the zest) and the blood orange juice and Reyes 2013 Quinn’s Zin.
6.. Whisk until the batter is mixed.
7. Lightly grease the bottom and sides of an 9×9 square pan or a 9 in. round cake pan with non stick spray.

8. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45-50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center and it comes out clean.
9. Let cool and serve with a glass of Reyes 2013 Quinn’s Zin.