Four Vines Winery is a Paso Robles based Winery. While they make other varietals, Zinfandel stands at the heart of their production. In addition to Zinfandels produced from Paso Robles fruit they also make Zinfandels from several other regions. Today I'm going to look at two of their current releases. Up first is The Maverick. This is a 2006 Zinfandel made from fruit sourced in Amador County. 3,900 cases of this offering were produced and it has a suggested retail price of $25.00
Cedar, cherry and vanilla notes fill the nose of this hearty Zinfandel. It's a bit tight out of the bottle and an hour in the decanter does wonders to help it shine. Once it opens up, tons of black cherry appear from the very first sip and lead to persistent mocha notes that carry through the palate. These are followed by more dark berry fruit notes and spice characteristics. The finish brings out some earth as the spice notes emerge more prominently. White pepper is the most prominent of the spice characteristics, followed by subtler nutmeg. This wine is balanced by firm acidity and will be an excellent match for red meats and grilled fare in general.
Amador County is an excellent source of Zinfandel. Many fine examples emerge from there, some of them from tiny producers which don't always make it throughout the country. This is a fine example from Amador with a production large enough that it should be available to most people.
The second wine from Four Vines is the 2006 Old Vines Cuvee. Lots of wine from Amador, Paso Robles, Lodi, Sonoma & Mendocino were blended together to create this wine. 28,000 cases were produced and the suggested retail price is right around $15.
Berry Jam and vanilla notes fill this wines nose. The palate is full, rich and concentrated with tons of berry fruit. Pomegranate notes, sour cherry and black pepper kick in at mid-palate and carry through to the finish which also includes a subtle bit of earth.
While it has a suggested retail of about $15, the Old Vine Cuvee can commonly be found for around $12. At that price it's been an excellent value for a number of years now. What I like best is that it provides good varietal character at a modest price. This is a Zin you can open any night of the week without breaking the bank. With the number of cases produced, it won't be hard to find either.
I'll be looking at a couple of other Zinfandels from Four Vines in the upcoming weeks, look out for them.
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