Lodi Zinfandel – Cline Cellars
Lodi Zinfandel – CLINE CELLARS is a family-owned vineyard and winery with 460 hectares under vine in Contra Costa County and Sonoma County, California. Established in 1982 by Fred Cline, a descendant of Italian US settlers, he originally founded the winery in Oakley, Contra Costa County, cultivating Rhône varieties and Zinfandel on vines dating back to 1906. In the 1990s, the family moved their winemaking operation to a 350 acre ranch in Carneros Valley, adopting sustainable farming in 2000, and building the largest solar panelled winery in California. Whist others in California were focusing on Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay in the ‘80s, Fred Cline saw the potential of Rhône varieties and Zinfandel in his vineyards.
Cline Cellars produce sustainably farmed, hand-crafted wine which have all the appeal and ripe fruit you might expect from California but in an authentic, highly rewarding, terroir-driven style.
VIDEO: Cline Cellars – Sonoma County Wine Tasting Room
When selecting fruit for Lodi Zinfandel, Cline focus primarily on harmony, early drinkability and elegant structure. This vintage draws from 14 superb Zinfandel vineyards in the legendary area of Lodi where warm days and cool nights have ripened grapes to perfection for over 100 years.
The Science Bit
The grapes are de-stemmed and lightly crushed to preserve fruit and limit harsh tannin extraction. A moderately warm fermentation in closed stainless steel tanks using specific wine yeast comes next. Once desired tannin levels are achieved, the wine is racked two or even three times before aging in wood for eight months. This achieves early elegance without sacrificing bright fruit. They use 35% new French oak with a medium toast level, which contributes a delicate toasty vanilla character to the wine without masking the abundant fruit.
What does it go with?:
This wine will pair very well with red meats but also pork, smoked meats or a fish stew
“Bright aromas of raspberry and wildflower open to lively, easygoing flavours of cherry, dill and white pepper.” 88 points. Tim Fish – Wine Spectator Spring 2015.