This is one of the best-value, hugely rewarding Zinfandels going. It's a big Zin, but has richness and depth in balance with tannins and a juicy fruit acidity that keeps the whole thing in check. Flavours of dark fruits, cherry, plum, overripe strawberries and spice. If you think Zinfandel is plain and boring, give this a go - it is entertaining and endlessly giving!
This is a classic in the Cline family winery.
This delicious Zinfandel sees six months' aging in 35% new French oak with a medium toast level that gives a lovely toasty vanilla character to the wine that supports the delicious, dark and abundant fruit flavours.
It exemplifies their tireless pursuit of excellence in Zinfandel (and other ancient European varieties) has earned them great respect and sees their wines in select settings across the globe. Established in 1982, the winery moved the winery from Oakley to Carneros in Sonoma, which is now the home of the very welcoming Fred and Nancy, whose pursuit of the "other" established them as some of the original 'Rhone Rangers' in their planting of Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre and Viognier.
Their search for quality has mutated from vineyard to winery and now all areas of sustainability, which is remarkably telling in the sourcing of all products that the business uses. It seems to be a part of all wineries these days, but there is a sense that with smaller, family-run and owned wineries, that sustainability matters at a more human level. Perhaps it's not as true as that, but the commitment is compelling and very credible. I met Fred at a wine fair and was immediately hit by his humility, enthusiasm and warmth. The wines, even before that, had always impressed. After that, I was a convert!
As Wine Enthusiast says, when adding it to their Editors' Choice: "All about ripeness, this flavourful full-bodied wine fairly oozes strawberry-jam and blackberry-syrup aromas, equally rich but not sweet flavours and a good firm structure of fine-grained tannins. Best through [sic] 2024." 93 points
Style: Svelte, Structured, Silky, Round, Rich, Full, Complex, Balanced
Best food matches: Steak, Soft Cheeses, Red Meats, Mature Cheeses, Lamb, Hard Cheeses, Grills, Charcuterie, Barbecue