Price: $9.99 at Total Wine
Style: The “Tom” (Medium body and power with some interesting tastes beyond basic fruits.)
Recommendation: “Grab a few bottles”
Another nice bottle in this month’s challenge! A wonderful nose; strong, sweet, and more complex than you usually get at this price, showing cinnamon, spice, and, sweet tobacco. The palate builds on those flavors with an undertow of blackberry holding it all together. Very smooth and easy drinking. This one would be a “Great” instead of a “Good” if it had a little more power and structure.
The Gnarled Vine is just a wee bit more complex and sophisticated than the Zen of Zin, but it’s also just a wee bit more expensive. They’re both quite good and it’s just a matter of your taste. Try them both!
Gnarled Vine is produced by Oak Ridge Winery, the oldest operating winery in Lodi since 1934. It existed as a cooperative until the Maggio and Reynolds families purchased and updated the winery in 2002. Oak Ridge produces several different brands, but I can’t find any information specific to Gnarled Vine on their website. Maybe it’s more of a white-label for TotalWine?