Price: $9.99 at Total Wine
Style: The “Tom” (Medium body and power with some interesting tastes beyond basic fruits.)
Rating: “Really Good”
Recommendation: “Grab a few bottles”
The Ravenswood Lodi Zinfandel is a really nice offering that perfectly hits the balance of earthy and fruity for me. When we first opened the bottle, it was quite a bit more rustic and earthy than the Napa version, both on the nose and the palate. It had a little bit more of a tannic bite to it and it showed less fruit. (My wife actually really preferred the Napa on Day 1, while I slightly preferred the Lodi.) By Day 2, the profile had evolved and was much more fruit-forward and smoothed out. With flavors including cherry, blackberry, vanilla, hot chocolate, black pepper, and earth, none of it came across as particularly sweet or candied. On both days, it was rich with a medium-full body. Most people would probably enjoy this wine more after a couple hours of decanting.
It looks like I may have coincidentally saved the best for last this month… This is my favorite value Zinfandel of the challenge and, at $9.99, it clocks in $2 cheaper than the Ravenswood Napa or the Rancho Zabaco. At $9.99, I don’t think the value is quite there to justify a whole case, but I’m definitely going to pick up a few bottles of this to see how it ages over the next couple of years.
- Our Lodi Zin explodes with blueberries, black plums, vanilla, and cocoa. Lush and mouthfilling, with incredibly silky tannins that slide into a long, flavorful finish. Uncork now for a tempting taste, or cellar for up to 10 years of flavor development.
The Lodi region is characterized by warm days and cool nights with deep, sandy soils, forcing the vine’s roots to push deep to find water and nutrients. The old vines that supply our Lodi Zinfandel typically are the first of our three County Zinfandels to be harvested. The warm days and early ripening lead to a soft and very fruit-driven Zinfandel.
More info on Ravenswood:
Launched in 1976 with a focus on single-vineyard Zinfandel, Ravenswood has grown dramatically now producing many different varieties and blends at many different price points from all across California.
To give you some idea of what Ravenswood is all about, this is the first winery website where I’ve found a picture of the owner with a gun. 🙂
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