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Snooth User: JenniferT

Lodi wines and additional wines for upcoming tasting

Posted by JenniferT, Apr 28, 2013.

I am planning on joining in on the upcoming Lodi virtual tasting. I was able to find 2 of wines that will be shown: the Klinker Brick Old Vine Zinfandel and the Michael David Petite Petit.

I was hoping to supplement these wines with 1 or 2 that might be educational for comparison sake. There are a few options. I am fairly sure I did see another Lodi Old Vine Zyn at the same store. (I'm hoping that maybe the significance of "old vine" will be discussed). I have a "regular" Lodi Zyn at home (Earthquake) that I picked up because I expect it to be anything but....it was suggested to me as an example of an "over the top/no holds barred California style of zyn".

Another Lodi Zyn might serve to reinforce what is unique about Lodi wine, or alternatively highlight the differences of winemaker style, etc. I am focusing on Zyn because it is more common than Petite Syrah or Petit Verdot. But I could probably find a decent selection of Syrah....although I think that would be another varietal entirely.  

It might be nice to get another Zyn from elsewhere in california, preferably a region that is distinctive and very different than Lodi in hopes that this second wine would serve just serve as an interesting contrast (I know...all the regions are different...but I am looking for differences that would be more pronounced to a relative beginner - me).

I'd love to get advice on additional wines to compare/contrast for the purpose of this tasting! 

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Replies

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Reply by jtryka, Apr 28, 2013.

I've had the Klinker Brick before, very nice, but in my more simplistic view, I love any Zins from Lodi, to me, the best Zins come from there, so almost anything would be worth trying in my view.  Looking forward to the tasting!

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Reply by EMark, Apr 29, 2013.

Jennifer, I am going to dispute with JT a bit.  I also enjoy Lodi Zins (esp., Oak Ridge), but then, again, I enjoy Zins from all over the state.  My favorites, though come from Northern Sonoma County -- Dry Creek Valley AVA, Rockpile AVA, Alexander Valley AVA, for example.  Zins from these areas are not quite as rich and jammy as Lodi versions.  Also, if you are sensitve to alcohol, they are, generally, not quite as alcoholic as Lodi versions.

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Reply by winefoodtravelarts, Apr 29, 2013.

My e-mail said the Virtual tasting Reminder said it takes place at 5:30pm EST.

I thought 8:30pm was correct--will have to miss it, as I will be a 'Wines of Portugal' wine and food pairing seminar to 7pm..

Enjoy..

 

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Apr 29, 2013.

I do like Lodi Zins, and also Petite Sirah from Lodi, but I agree with Emark that the very best Zins come from Dry Creek Valley and Rockpile particularly.  (I'm a little less enthralled with Alexander Valley, and it's worth noting that some of the famous Zins actually come from Russian River Valley, although that style has not appealed to me quite as much.)  Zin can take heat, but Lodi, to my thinking, might be a little too hot, and lacks some of the temperature variation of DCV and Rockpile. 

Definitely for contrast you could try RRV Zins, or even Paso Robles Zins.  The Ridge Paso bottling is an affordable entree into Ridge Zins.  Major RRV Zins include Gracianna (hard to find), Williams-Selyem, Hartford Family (Fanucchi-Wood vineyard is 100 years old!).  Search the threads and you'll find many discussions of RRV and DCV wines, and some threads on Paso Robles. 

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Reply by outthere, Apr 29, 2013.

 

The virtual tasting is at 5:30 PDT since Greg is broadcasting it from Lodi. Still 8:30 your time.Delete message
 
Dry Creek has a distinct flavor profile which is different from neighboring Sonoma Valley and RRV with more spice. No matter which one you choose they will be different from Lodi.
 
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Reply by JenniferT, Apr 29, 2013.

Thanks for the great suggestions. 

I'm kind of limited as to what I have access to at stores on Van Island. I don't think I can get Ridge - only their Three Valleys. A preliminary search shows a few possibilities: Paso Creek Zinfandel (the only available zinfandel from paso robles I can find...so far, anyway), Rodney Strong Knotty Vines Zyn (grapes sourced from both Russian River and Alexander Valley), and Seghesio Cortina Zinfandel (Dry Creek). I'm leaning towards the last option, since their Sonoma Zinfandel is also available (therefore I might get closer to seeing the environmental differences more clearly...IF the winemaking style is more similar). 

I'm looking forward to playing along at home on Wednesday. It'll be a busy day of tasting as I'm showing up at a thing showcasing wines from Bird in Hand winery (the winemaker will be in attendance). I'm going to have to decide in advance if I want to invest in the Nest Egg Shiraz.

On an equally unrelated side note, it seems like looking for a quality blush zinfandel is akin to looking for a unicorn. I wonder why it (apparently) doesn't exist? 

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Reply by JenniferT, Apr 29, 2013.

Heck, another idea might be even to throw in a primitivo to compare to the different zinfandels. What do you guys think?

I read that both primitivo and zinfandel are clones, so I was thinking that these are interchangeable names for the same grape (hey, I've already made the disclaimer that I am a beginner).

The genetic designation as clones is what actually threw me off in this case. I read that "clones" of grape varieties are not genetically identical at all, but rather a closely related genetic subtype. It often occurs naturally via natural selection or growers just selecting for preferred traits.

So....they are closely related but NOT identical. That said, I still don't really understand the differences at all (or know what to expect from my reading). So I think I'll toss a primitivo in the mix for kicks, and try to start figuring out what the differences might be for myself.

 

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Reply by outthere, Apr 29, 2013.

The Seghesio idea is a good one since it is available to you. The Cortina is a nice wine. The Sonoma County is a good daily drinker blend of different vineyards from DCV, RRV and Sonoma Valley. Anything Ridge is a good choice as well.

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Reply by JonDerry, Apr 30, 2013.

I had a Primitivo recently that did a decent Zin impression, but it's different in its own right, mostly because it comes from Italy. Kind of like Cabernet from Bordeaux, and then from Napa. They may be the same grape, but they taste quite a bit different.

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Reply by napagirl68, Apr 30, 2013.

Foxall said:  "I'm a little less enthralled with Alexander Valley"

I couldn't agree more.  I know it's a great AVA for Zin as everyone says, but I like nothing from there as a rule.  Again, I am not a zin fan in general, but Mauritson still makes my fav zin....  I also like a few from sonoma and paso robles.

The Macchia will be the hardest to match...   Amador zins may come close to Lodi Zins..  They do vary for many reasons. One is because of the terroir- Lodi is more fertile and warm, which can lead to overripe grapes lacking tannins.  Also, it is a relatively new winemaking region-winemakers with good fruit, decent winemakers with so-so fruit, newbie winemakers with decent fruit but little experience, and a small few blatantly bad winemakers with substantial fruit that look to mass produce.  It's a bit of a crapshoot, but it's getting better and better. 

Amador has a better terroir, IMO.  But winemaking is still in it's infancy for some, which can result in inconsistent product.  But there are great winemakers up in Amador, with great zins... Shenandoah valley vineyards is one of those. 

I am particularly impressed with the whites from some of the smaller vineyards in Lodi,  like Heritage Oaks Vineyards.  I know Lodi is known for zins, but I like the whites!  Albarino, vermintino, roussanne, etc... that's what I really like from here.

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Reply by outthere, Apr 30, 2013.

 "Foxall said:  'I'm a little less enthralled with Alexander Valley'

I couldn't agree more.  I know it's a great AVA for Zin as everyone says, but I like nothing from there as a rule.  Again, I am not a zin fan in general, but Mauritson still makes my fav zin....  I also like a few from sonoma and paso robles."

One word - Scherrer

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Reply by JenniferT, Apr 30, 2013.

I recently discovered Albarino, I'd like to get another one or two and compare them with the Lodi one. Thanks for the idea! 

Just soo much to drink, lol! I must admit that I'm a little jealous of you guys in the US - lower prices on wine and much more selection. Even on vacation...tasting rooms are often more fun until they realize you're from Canada and therefore not a candidate buyer for their wine clubs. But perhaps these limits are going to save my liver in the end, since self-defined limits don't seem to be so much my forte.

Still, all this reminds me that I am overdue for a trip down south sometime soon. :)

Once again - thanks for the feedback. I'm going to pick up the Seghesio Cortina but probably not the Sonoma as I'm more interested in wines that represent a single place or specific environment. That puts me up to 5-6 wines to compare, which is more than plenty for the two of us, really. :)

 

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Reply by JenniferT, May 1, 2013.

Good news - I actually found another zinfandel in my wine collection at home, one that I didn't know I have. Now I'll compare our wines with Earthquake (another Lodi Zyn) and Easton (a Zyn from Amador county) - let's hope it's representative of the better zyns Napagirl mentioned. It's my understanding that the wine is terroir driven - but I'd like to see that translated to differences I can smell and taste.

Bad news - I'm probably going to have to run out shortly, which is super annoying given that the virtual tasting is about to start. If I miss some (or all) of it, I'm hoping that I can just watch it as soon as it's posted. (Sadly it won't be in real time). I had been looking forward to joining in.

Thanks again for all the great suggestions!

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Reply by vin0vin0, May 1, 2013.

Jennifer, personally I haven't had a lot experience with Lodi Zins but love the Zins from northern Sonoma that EMARK and FOXALL suggest. Mauritson and Ridge are two of my favorites. Adelaida and Four Vines are two from Paso. Another to try would be Valdez family, from as far north in Russian River as you can get (Botticelli or St. Peter's Church) although you may have issues with the border patrol. You might find this previous thread interesting (search for - the zinner party).

Side note to OUTTHERE, we're supposed to keep that secret to ourselves, didn't you get the note?  Just kidding, my Fred zin futures are resting well, although it is difficult to resist popping those corks.

 

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Reply by JenniferT, May 1, 2013.

I will have to see what I can pick up. I *may* be going down to do some tasting in washington this weekend so that will definitely change the wines I'll have access to purchasing.  :)

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Reply by napagirl68, May 1, 2013.

Jennifer t,

Hope you had a good tasting with the wines you found.  I wanted to mention that I have liked Easton/ Terre Rouge wines from Amador- but they do not age very well.  Amador makes some GREAT wines, but something is still lacking in the winemaking that allows for a secondary fermentation (bubbly koolaide)  after a relatively short time.  So there is a bit of risk there, and I am hoping your Easton was still drinkable.

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Reply by JenniferT, May 3, 2013.

I haven't opened the Easton yet, but it's in my group of wines that are next up - so I will come back here and let you know. I hope its still drinkable too. :)

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Reply by JenniferT, May 16, 2013.

Oops...I forgot to come back and post about this one...but I did have the Easton Zin and I really loved it. I think the bottle I had was still drinking very well....so I dodged the bubbly kool-aid after all!  

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Reply by EMark, May 16, 2013.

Good to know.  I happened to meet up with Jon Derry, today, and mentioned to him that I had found Gold Country Zins to be a tad disappointing--I love things like Barbera and Petite Sirah from Gold Country.  I'll keep my eye out for Easton.

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Reply by JenniferT, May 16, 2013.

Your bar is probably higher than mine, EMARK - I'm still pretty inexperienced. But I liked the Easton. I thought the that the fruit, tannin, and acidity were well balanced.

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