This is a rather interesting wine. Not trying to sound surprised, but the horrible label, mom & pop title, and sketchy origin all add up to *expectations*. Not to mention: it IS Zinfandel, and SOOOO many crimes are committed against this grape in California. Didn’t even check the alcohol–something I’m fairly fastidious about with this variety: because of those afore-mentioned sins.
Rosy ruby in the glass with an abrupt rim. Dense and packed with briar and vegetal in the nose, the deep cherry and berry flow off concentrated, but not slutty or cloying. Calm savory instincts and ripe floral fill the middle–everything quite well-integrated: rather sophisticated–but easily so. This is PURE Zin.
Tasting it introduces many more advocates of *pure Zin* to the conversation. Unmistakably the variety: People always say I like my Zins to taste like Cab and that is NOT true. They need to feel like Zinfandel–I just don’t like them pancake syrup. The pithy green nose on this one almost assures pitch-perfect concentration and varietal correctness. Dry and amazingly thin on the palate, it still manages a flush, chubby Zin-expression withouth the heat and dullness almost universal these days. Spicy and vibrant, it quickly evolves into a tannic power-house. This is an extremely small-production local wine so good luck finding or buying it, but if you CAN: it will bring back all your 70’s and 80’s Zinfandel fantasies. At 8, I am shocked how young and vibrant it is. Reminds me of Burgess or Cline. Jackass and Black Sears. I don’t even know who makes it, but the font and name on back have triggered a couple memories. I shall find out shortly.
2014 ONE BARREL WINES ‘Whole Cluster’ Zinfandel Arroyo Grande Valley SLO Coast AVA 14.5