Saturday, January 15, 2011

In-Cline-d Toward Contra Costa County and De-Cline from Ancient Vines, Yet York Creek Has The Edge

Cline Bridgehead 2008 Zinfandel, $12.24, 90 points, a wine of Contra Costa County's Vineyard, located in Oakley, California is a wonderful Zin with spring-earth aromas reminiscent of my youthful digging for earth worms on my Huck-Finn adventures at the lake, earthy yet fragrant. Having a Royal purple color yielding to a supple-smooth singularly delicious Zinfandel experience; having a refined white-pepper finish, this Zin is a bit novel for me, with an almost unnoticeable 15% alcohol. This gulper of a Zin paired well with a Flat-bread Chipotle pizza. The alcohol was more noticeable on day two, and even more on day three.
If this wine interests you, I would hurry to the New Hampshire Liquor store near you, because this price and maybe this Zin will not be available for very long (Power-buy).

Cline Ancient Vines 2008 Zinfandel, $13.59, 86 points, was more a disappointment, but not a bad wine: burgundy color, having the aroma of earthy grape, a medium bodied wine with fair acidity and mild tannin, rolling easily into early palate Black-pepper, finishing well with mixed pepper, floral notes and licorice. Not as lush or as smooth as its cousin the Bridgehead Zin.

Ridge Zinfandels are one of the famous five Rs in California Zinfandel wines, and the
Ridge York Creek 2005 Zinfandel, $24.64, 92 points, is one reason that Ridge is still a hallmark in the Zinfandel world: black-ruby-red with a bursting bouquet (I just sat there with my nose in that glass for fifteen minutes) of blackberries soaked in an August afternoon sun, blackberry patches melting into the forest flora fragrances, aided by toasty cranberry bagels. What you say? Yes, yes, yes, this is the way it should be if you have such a wine, get carried away, be enriched, because this isn't the way Zinfandel wines usually are.
But, it is not aromas that usually cause you to buy one Zinfandel over another, but what of its flavor?
Multiply your olfactory senses with those of you mouth and the gentle clove, slight minty White-pepper, and bright cherry finish will reward you with a wonderful wine experience.
Ask someone else about Ridge Zinfandel wines:
"Hard to find from a cult vineyard synonymous with craftsmanship and greatness. A blend of 92% Zinfandel and 8% Petite Sirah (sic). A wine described at a tasting as "big, full fleshy fruit, still SO lively, with focused mouth coating flavors and long finish. One of the stars of the day."
1981 Ridge Zinfandel York Creek Napa"

This, from Wine Commune dated 12/29/10, gives an interesting view into the supposed quality, of the Ridge York Creek Zinfandel.

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  1. With Zinfandel wines being as good as this Ridge you must be out of your mind not to have some of these and others I've reviewed in your cellar. Though a 2005 vintage, some charts would give you at least two more years in the cellar, and some reports on Riidge Zins give them even more time.

  2. The NH Liquor Store's product finder-link wasn't working on Tue. morning.
    So I checked from the source and wasn't able to use it there either.