A Visit To Lodi

GDP reflects on a trip to this unique California region


Sorelle Winery


Sorelle is a relative newcomer to the wine scene in Lodi, with vineyards purchased in 2007 and 2009 being their first vintage. As the name alludes to, Italian varieties are the focus here, and current production has reached 2,500 cases, up from 900 in 2009.


These are wines that are in the traditional Lodi style, which is to say easy drinking for the most part and reflective of the relatively warm climate in which the grapes grow.


2012 Sorelle Pinot Grigio Clarskburg 13% $16


Mineral and a bit nutty on the nose with fresh notes of pear fruit. Opening very clear and fresh on the palate with a little sage herb and mineral oil notes, this is very light, broad and a little soft on the palate. Fairly fruit-driven with lots of pear and soft peach on the finish. Easy to drink. 84pts


2010 Sorelle Barbera Bellezza Fra Lodi 13.3% $25


High toned on the nose with assertive aromas of black fruit, black plum framed with a little peppery spice and a touch of vanilla. Opening with a nice initial acid edge, this shows very soft tannins supporting gentle black cherry that has a nice clear feel on the palate. There’s a nice persistence to the fruit there, and this feels nicely fresh and well-balanced though it is a bit on the simple side.  86pts


2010 Sorelle Sangiovese Troppo Bella 13.9% $23


Deeply aromatic on the nose with notes of tobacco, stemmy roses, and lots of earthiness coming together with reasonable complexity. This is pretty soft on entry, broad, transparent, and a bit simple in the mouth but with attractive leafy edges to the sour wild cherry fruit. Tannins that are a little rustic drive the nervous, fresh finish. 87pts


2010 Sorelle Primitivo Soriso 14.9% $22


Noticeable sweet walnutty oak notes on the nose are joined by aromas of teriyaki, black pepper, beef earth and leather framing the dark cherry almost plummy fruit. This is decidedly large scaled, but balanced with spicy fruit that has a lightly roasted character and a smooth, polished mouthfeel. This is powerful and deep, with good focus and a sweetly smoky cast to the palate and the fairly long finish. 88pts


2010 Sorelle Russo Red 14.5% $34

75% Cabernet, 25% Sangiovese in oak for 24 months

Lots of very ripe cabernet on the nose with some leafy mint tones and an overall warm climate fudginess is accented by perfumed toast spice. On entry this is lighter than one might expect, with good simple sweet fruit showing some late arriving black currant and herb complexity that has a very nice snap to it. The tannins here are soft and this shows good length to the tart sour cherry fruit on the finish. 87pts



2012 Sorelle Late Harvest Primitivo, 17.5% 

Barrel Sample

Dark fruit, spices, and fresh oak add detail to the rather fresh wild blackberry and and spiced cherry fruit on the nose. This shows a gorgeous expression of LH Zinfandel on the palate, rich yet clear as a bell, with lots of depth and a fine, easy edge. The back end reveals a nice peppery edge and the gentle hint of RS that helps drive the spice on the moderately long finish. This is very complete with excellent potential, but it does show a little heat at 17.5%. 89pts



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Mentioned in this article


  • Snooth User: dogears
    156430 1

    Are these reviews generated by random wine words? soft and straight forward both (chose one)? 'Slightly damp'? 'hint of old catcher's mitt'? Drivel that is nearly completely without meaning.

    Jun 10, 2013 at 2:40 PM

  • Snooth User: Jonar
    156583 127

    Newsflash, Gregory Del Piaz (Snooth) visits Heritage Oak Winery! Success! Now he needs to try Jessie's Grove as well.

    Jun 10, 2013 at 2:57 PM

  • Snooth User: Jonar
    156583 127

    Oh well, just got to the review, I only would drink 1 of the 4 sampled (Zin).

    Jun 10, 2013 at 3:00 PM

  • Snooth User: JaimeJ
    1294952 21

    Some posibility to taste those wines for a sapnish wine writer?

    Jun 10, 2013 at 5:42 PM

  • Snooth User: Jonar
    156583 127

    Sapnish? JaimeJ: I assume you are a writer from Spain and not Sapnish. Most of the excellent Lodi wines are only available in Lodi. If you do try Heritage Oak, please make sure to sample all of their reds; Tom, the owner is great. I also enjoy Jessie's Grove in Lodi (again the reds). My favorite Heritage Oak is "Vino Tinto", (at our wedding reception) and then the pricier reds as well.
    As Greg mentions, Michael David is a larger, more popular Lodi winery (and in many stores/many states) with multiple brands. The one that I recommend from Michael David is the $36 Inkblot Cab Franc (rare to find a Cab Franc that I like).

    Jun 10, 2013 at 8:15 PM

  • Snooth User: Kiwi Koala
    1116094 49

    Had a great taste with nice people http://www.winewalkabout.net/2012/1...


    Jun 10, 2013 at 10:11 PM

  • Sorelle means sisters in Italian. Wonder where the vintner gets the name?

    Jun 11, 2013 at 6:29 AM

  • Snooth User: Jon Bjork
    535696 15

    The name Sorelle comes from owner Mike Scott's two daughters, who work at the winery and tasting room.

    Jun 11, 2013 at 11:21 AM

  • Because they are sisters. Thank you.

    Jun 11, 2013 at 1:42 PM

  • Great article, I've been curious about Lodi for awhile and have heard some of these names. I can't wait to try them for myself. Fortunately I'm conveniently located central to Lodi, Napa, Lake County and Amador!

    Jan 07, 2014 at 2:57 AM

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