You know that guy or girl. The wine fridge is stocked with all the big name producers covering everything from Cabernet to Chardonnay, with plenty of Pinot stocked in between! You think he or she is the hardest person to shop for, but really it couldn’t be easier. All you need to do is buy him or her something that will surprise.

Fine wine is more like aesthetic arts and crafts, the qualities appreciated are sensory, a state of mind rather than a measurable technology. After all, you can’t really give a person 99 points, but you can give him a thrill ride of discovery.

The most exciting wines, or any gifts for that matter, are those that are totally new and unexpected. If there’s anything for which the wines from Lodi CA are becoming increasingly known, it’s their originality and total, wonderful ability to surprise and delight at a remarkably reasonable price.  

So if you truly wish to turn on the big-shot wine lover in your life this holiday season, consider putting together a case of these exciting Lodi wines:

WHITES

2009 Alta Mesa Cellars, Lodi Verdelho ($14) – Dry white with peach and lime, hints of pineapple sage and lemon verbena; lightly tart, silky smooth. 

2009 Uvaggio, Lodi Vermentino ($14) – Cool stone, citrus and dried herb with lavender notes; potpourri sensations and lemony crispness in a light, lithe body. 

2011 Viñedos Aurora Lodi Albariño ($17) – Minerals and fruit in a dry, medium-bodied package; bright tropical fruits and fresh squeezed citrus.

2010 Odisea Cochon, Clements Hills-Lodi Grenache Blanc ($25) – White peach, apricot and tropical flowers with honeyed melon; quince-like flavors layered upon creamy sensations.

REDS

2008 Bokisch, Terra Alta Vineyard Clements Hills-Lodi Garnacha ($18) – Sensual, strawberry liqueur fruit finishing with whiffs of tobacco.
 
2009 R (Jeff Runquist), Silvaspoons Lodi Souzão ($24) – Luscious and dry with black and Bing cherry explosion in a soft, almost levitating medium body. 

2007 Fenestra, Silvaspoons Vineyards Lodi Touriga ($28) – Dry with sensations of roasting beef, concentrated plum and blackberry fruit in nose, with thick, meaty palate sensations. 

2010 Spenker Winery Lodi Zinfandel ($19) – Explosion of fruit on the palate, oak and vanilla cream; black cherry with hints of black pepper. 

2009 Kidder Family, Lodi Syrah ($26) – Violet and Asian tea spice perfumes; meaty, yet vibrant, silky sensations that fill the mouth without weighing it down. 

2008 Grands Amis, Elk Vineyard Private Reserve Borden Ranch-Lodi Petit Verdot ($25) – Compote of raspberry and blackberry aromas against allspice, oak; taut, dense, yet sumptuous texturing giving a compact, elegant feel. 

2009 Michael-David, Inkblot Lodi Cabernet Franc ($35) – Rich, satiny smooth with floral/violet aromas; wild berry perfumes and suggestions of smoky, roasting coffee. 

SWEET WINE

2009 St. Jorge, Lodi Sobremesa ($23/half-bottle) – Sensually soft, discreetly sweet; essence of pear and apple nectars with twists of lemon peel.

**These wine tasting notes came directly from Randy Caparoso, with the exception of Vinedos Aurora Lodi Albarino and Spenker Winery Zinfandel, which came from their respective winery websites.