Sometimes a wine really takes you off guard. This one did for sure. I find it amusing that it’s called not just old vine but ancient vines. Not that either term has any legislated meaning. Moving on … Dark in color, right out of the bottle the wine displays some odd earth notes, reminiscent of a pinot noir. At first right in the front of the mouth you are hit by some strong sugar content, and some rich strawberry notes. Very atypical of a Zinf. This dies down quickly (like within 10 mins) and evolves in the glass into a deep rich varietal Zinf. The wine has some firm tannins on the finish along with some peppery notes. This is a big wine. We paired it with a filet mignon and it held it’s own nicely. It’s a lovely wine. I would give it an 89 or so.

From the LCBO web site:
CLINE ANCIENT VINES ZINFANDEL 2011 VINTAGES 719211 | 750 mL bottle Price $ 19.95
Made in: California, USA By: Cline Cellars
Release Date: Aug 17, 2013
15.0% Alcohol/Vol. Style: Full-bodied & Smooth Sugar Content: 8 g/L Sweetness Descriptor: D – Dry

Tasting Note
This Zinfandel comes from dry-farmed vines planted over a century ago, and the concentration and complexity of the wine attests to its impressive heritage. Notions of tilled earth, dates, dark cherry, raspberry pie and mincemeat delight the senses. On the palate it’s juicy and voluptuous and wears its robust build gracefully. Well balanced throughout, with great, almost Port-like complexity on the finish. Drink over the next 5 years with pulled pork or barbecued ribs. (VINTAGES panel, June 2013)


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