96 points - rare
Outpost is one of California's finest Zinfandel producers with winemaker Thomas Rivers Brown - limited.
Superstar winemaker Thomas Rivers Brown has completely bowled us over with the Outpost Howell Mountain Zinfandel, bursting as it is from the glass with aromas of lemon thyme, blueberry, fig newtons, dried blueberries, black cherry, all lilting above a palate with thrilling concentration. This is spectacular Zinfandel that simply knows exactly how good it is.
95 Points Jeb Dunnuck: "The Outpost 2018 Zinfandel isn't far off the style of the Grenache yet has plenty of classic Zin character as well. Blue fruits, peppery herbs, sandalwood, tobacco, and assorted spice notes all emerge from the glass, and it hits the palate with medium to full-bodied richness, a rounded, layered texture, ripe tannins, and a great finish. This is a gorgeous Zinfandel, and like the Grenache release, it’s a singular wine. Drink it over the coming 10-12 years as well."
91 Points Robert Parker: "Made from 100% Zinfandel, the Outpost 2018 Zinfandel is deep garnet-purple colored, sashaying out of the glass with bold, open-knit scents of warm blackberries, cracked pepper, spice box and raspberry pie, plus hints of hoisin and fruitcake. Full-bodied, the palate delivers mouth-filling black fruit preserves flavors and a racy line, textured by chewy tannins, finishing long and spicy. 600 cases were made."
One of the best value boutique Zinfandels in California from Klinker Brick! An intense, fruit-filled wine you expect to cost at least twice as much. If you have yet to try a Zin from Lodi, this is the one!
The Klinker Brick 2017 Old Vines Zinfandel is produced from an amalgam of 14 different vineyard blocks, ranging in age from 35 to 110 years old. This vintage saw lower yields, producing a wine that is both complex and bold. Showing typical Klinker Brick cherry/berry/plum fruit components with aromatic spices on the nose, this wine is incredibly well balanced with a silky smooth texture and a long lingering finish. One of their best!
A fantastic $20 Old Vines Zinfandel from Carol Shelton.
91 Points Wine Spectator: "A juicy bomb of fruit, this red is also well-structured, with lively raspberry, toasty spice and roasted sage flavors that linger on a snappy finish. Drink now through 2028"
Carol Shelton has been lauded with countless medals and honors through the course of her 35-year winemaking career. In fact, she is said to be one of the most awarded winemakers in the country. Through Carol Shelton Wines, Carol could focus on whatever she chose—and she chose Zinfandel. Eager to capture all the nuances that terroir gives to this intriguing variety, Carol searched through the great California growing regions including Dry Creek Valley, Rockpile, Russian River Valley, Mendocino, and Cucamonga.