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Four Vines Winery Zinfandel the Sophisticate Sonoma County 2012

Editorial Review by Gregory Dal Piaz:

There’s a lot of cinnamon oak here on the nose, with rather assertive pepper-tinged, meaty, blueberry, blackberry and crystalized black plum fruit. Smells like Syrah. Opulent and mouth filling, this is rich and powerful but well balanced. Plenty of oaky sweetness here. The tannins are fine and well managed and the acidity very well integrated. The fruit is pretty, with great spicy notes and oak-accented blackberry and plum skin fruit. There’s more darkness on the back end, with coffee tones and some obvious toast that comes to dominate the moderately long finish. This is a nicely complete package. 90pts

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Four Vines Winery:
First there was ONE. Winemaker CHRISTIAN TIETJE is a hedonist. He is passionate about wine: making it, drinking it and bringing people together to enjoy it. Chris learned to love balanced, food-driven wines as an aspiring young chef in Boston. In 1990 he moved to San Francisco, determined to pursue his passion and become a winemaker. He fell head over heels for old vine Zinfandel, and began ... Read more
First there was ONE. Winemaker CHRISTIAN TIETJE is a hedonist. He is passionate about wine: making it, drinking it and bringing people together to enjoy it. Chris learned to love balanced, food-driven wines as an aspiring young chef in Boston. In 1990 he moved to San Francisco, determined to pursue his passion and become a winemaker. He fell head over heels for old vine Zinfandel, and began planning for bigger things. Then there were TWO. In 1994, Christian partnered with SUSAN A. MAHLER, a brainy and beautiful scientist and pilot, whom he nicknamed “SAM.” Armed with a degree in Earth Science, SAM took an immediate interest in vineyards. Together they created Four Vines Winery featuring eclectic, appellation-specific Zins, and one kick-ass no-oak “Naked” Chardonnay. They named their Zins Biker, Sophisticate and Maverick. Rich, succulent, fruit-generous wines that pair incredibly well with food. They relocated to Paso Robles where they began experimenting with Rhone varietals; bigger, headier wines that are positively explosive in flavor and form, as in the rogue Rhone blend “Anarchy.” Now there are THREE. Christian and SAM worked harder than ever to grow their winery to 14,000 cases, but they needed someone to help share the load. They connected with an old friend from Christian’s childhood, BILL GRANT, a successful entrepreneur and financier. Bill joined Four Vines as an advisor and financier in 2002 and joined the partnership in 2004, growing to approximately 40,000 cases and introducing new wines named Heretic and Phoenix. Bill travels across the country, turning on new audiences to the Four Vines Incident. Makers of fleshy, seductive wines for aficionados and hedonists alike, Four Vines brings a refreshing, playfully irreverent attitude to the industry. Read less

Editorial Reviews for Four Vines Winery Zinfandel the Sophisticate Sonoma County

Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065238,749
4.00 5
Vintage: 2009 01/12/2012

There’s a lot of cinnamon oak here on the nose, with rather assertive pepper-tinged, meaty, blueberry, blackberry and crystalized black plum fruit. Smells like Syrah. Opulent and mouth filling, this is rich and powerful but well balanced. Plenty of oaky sweetness here. The tannins are fine and well managed and the acidity very well integrated. The fruit is pretty, with great spicy notes and oak-accented blackberry and plum skin fruit. There’s more darkness on the back end, with coffee tones and some obvious toast that comes to dominate the moderately long finish. This is a nicely complete package. 90pts


Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065238,749
4.00 5
Vintage: 2006 04/06/2009

Musky and spicy with bowls of fresh berries, vanilla, cola, spice, tarry, brownie, peppercorn rare beef, complex and Spicy! Pretty well balanced with lovely wooly tannins and good acid supporting fairly transparent dark berry fruit. Not as spicy as the noise implied and gains a piercingly pure raspberry syrup note. A touch hot and that adds to a minty note with spicy wood tones and pepper on the backend. A vanilla note reappears on the finish the finish with an earthy sweet candied tone and nice refreshing red apple acids. Overall a pretty complex and nuanced rendition. 91pts

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ptp 17

Member Reviews for Four Vines Winery Zinfandel the Sophisticate Sonoma County

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Snooth User: Chris Carpita
330935,546
4.00 5
Vintage: 2009 01/11/2012

Lots of toast and marshmallows, bolstered with cherry fruit. Good red fruit in the body.


3.00 5
Vintage: 2009 01/06/2012

Bright red fruit and fresh acidity. Cherries, chocolate and cinnamon, with a zesty cocoa and raspberry finish.


Snooth User: Nicki Gig
1783064,217
3.50 5
Vintage: 2009 01/08/2012

smooth mouthfeel, a little more subtle and delicate in character vs the other zins I've had from Cali. nicely balanced with a combo of red and dark fruits, a little vanilla and oak on the nose, some spice, definite spice on the finish, but very beautiful non-abrasive qualities.


Snooth User: Kristin Watts
8549492,200
4.00 5
Vintage: 2009 02/12/2012

A lot of caramelly sweet notes laced with some heavy, dark fruit. A but toasty and chocolatey with a sexy finish.


Snooth User: Amanda Schuster
8703411,996
3.50 5
Vintage: 2009 01/09/2012

The way the fresh fruits (blackberry, raspberry), cocoa, warm spice and acidity dance together is sophisticated indeed. We're talking full on ball gowns, tux and tales, string quartet here. Luckily it's not priced for such an affair because I want to drink this again!

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  • Snooth User: Kate Statton
    8538361,080
    4.00 5
    Vintage: 2009 02/08/2012

    Fruity and bold with some smoke. Used this in a red wine pasta dish (the wine is cooked into the pasta itself - not the sauce) tossed with some evoo, garlic, sauteed chopped parsley and walnuts. sprinkle with parm DELICIOUS!


    Snooth User: pfmackin
    147441130
    3.50 5
    Vintage: 2008 03/17/2011

    Surprisingly well balanced with a mellow fruitiness off the top that flattens at the finish with more spice. The aromas can lead to a different expectation of more fruit than really exists. Easy to drink.


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    External Reviews for Four Vines Winery Zinfandel the Sophisticate Sonoma County

    External Review
    Vintage: 2010 10/03/2013

    Nicknamed The Sophisticate because it expresses the elegant side of Zinfandel, this wine has a sexy nose with anise, caramelized sugar, and spicy blackberry jam with a not of cherry cigar box. On the palate, strong vanilla, brooding fruit, spices of dark rum big flavors, yet refined and stylish.


    External Review
    Vintage: 2009 09/01/2011

    This wine has a sexy nose with velvet vanilla oak tones, followed by rich, spicy berry fruit and a hint of cedar. Big flavors, yet refined and stylish. The James Bond of Zinfandel he will seduce you.


    External Review
    Vintage: 2009 04/10/2014

    With a soft, silky mouthfeel and a great big burst of black pepper, this is a classic Sonoma Zin. It’s ripe in blackberries and currants, with a briary taste of anise and wild chamomile. Good now with barbecue


    External Review
    Vintage: 2009 04/10/2014

    Ripe and jammy, with smoky blackberry aromas and soft, rich black cherry, pepper and anise flavors. Drink now through 2016.


    External Review
    Vintage: 2008 05/18/2011

    Dense and jammy, with blackberry and black olive aromas that lead to zesty, complex huckleberry, licorice and black pepper flavors. Drink now through 2015.


    External Review
    Vintage: 2008 05/18/2011

    Dense and briary, but with an underlying sense of focus and balance. Aromas of wild berry and smoky sage lead to ripe, concentrated blackberry, licorice and cracked pepper flavors. Drink now through 2014.


    External Review
    Vintage: 2007 05/17/2010

    Our 2007 Sonoma Zin was kissed with a touch of Petite Sirah and aged in small French and American oak barrels for 14 months. This wine has a sexy nose with velvet vanilla oak tones, followed by rich, spicy berry fruit and a hint of cedar. Big flavors, yet refined and stylish. The James Bond of Zinfandel...he will seduce you. - Winery


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