Marietta Cellars Old Vine Red Lot 51 NV
Lot 51 is the latest release of Old Vine Red, our trademark blend that was first released almost 30 years ago in the early days of Marietta. Due to Dad's remarkable ability to maintain such high levels of both consistency and quality, the demand for Old Vine Red has steadily grown since Lot 1. Lot 51 carries on the tradition in stride with loads of ripe berry and peppery spice as well as hints of dried cherries and dusty herbs that add to the complexity. The color is deep ruby and purple, and the mouthfeel is forward, dense, and pleasantly rustic and ripe in a Zin-like style. As always, this lot will not last long, but those who grab a bottle or two will be sure to enjoy it as many have with the preceding 50 lots.
This wine is a tremendous value and will satisfy any wine snob's tastes, especially those who enjoy finding a diamond in the rough.
A friend brought this to us on a casual evening. Didn't drink it that night, so on a regular Wed night my husband grabbed it. Neither of us knew anything about it and we opened. It was so good we feared we had opened something that was from one of our wine expert friends that should be kept for a special occasion! What a nice surprise to look it up and find that its so reasonable. I'm going to go buy as much as I can. It is going to be my go to wine!
External Reviews for Marietta Cellars Old Vine Red Lot 51
One of California's iconic value wines, this old vine blend assembled by owner/winemaker Chris Bilbro is a combination of Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Carignane, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Syrah. The newest version, #49, is one of Bilbro's finest efforts to date. It boasts a deep plum/ruby color as well as a gorgeous nose of pepper, blackberries, black currants, roasted herbs, and forest floor. Full-bodied and dense with silky tannin as well as a lush texture, this is the quintessential bistro/brasserie/trattoria red to drink with gusto, exuberance, and joy. The price makes it an outright steal!
The non-vintage Old Vine Red Lot #50 (the 50th incarnation of this cuvee) offers a dark ruby/purple color along with a big, peppery, spicy, fruit-laden bouquet, chewy, fleshy, meaty flavors, plenty of body, but no hard edges. It is the ideal bistro/brasserie/trattoria red for luscious drinking at a bargain basement price. This wine flies off retailers' shelves, so smart consumers take note.
Year after year one of the best wine bargains from California is Marietta's non-vintage concoction, this year called Lot # 44. This is one of those blends made from everything but the kitchen sink, including Carignan, Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Alicante, and numerous mixed black varietals. Satisfying as well as a fine value, Lot # 44 possesses a deep ruby/purple color as well as a sweet nose of black fruits, underbrush, and pepper. This medium-bodied, soft effort is more superficial than usual, but will offer tasty drinking over the next year.
As for the newest release, the Lot #46 Old Vine Red (a blend of Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Carignane, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Syrah) comes across like a California Cotes du Rhone. It reveals leathery, peppery, slightly herbal, black cherry and currant fruit along with an excellent texture, forceful but well-balanced flavors, and lovely ripeness. Enjoy it over the next several years.
For some inexplicable reason, few California wineries turn out top quality value-priced wines. One exception is Marietta Cellars, which produces one of my favorite best buys from their blend of grapes (including Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Carignan, and Gamay) grown in Sonoma, Napa, and Mendocino. The non-vintage Old Vine Red Lot 37 exhibits a deep ruby color as well as a fragrant perfume of sweet berry fruit and loamy soil. While not complex, it offers a savory, nicely-textured mouthfeel, impressive purity, and a heady finish. Enjoy it over the next 1-3 years.
You need not pay attention to the lot number. I have tasted every one since the early teens, and the wine's uniformity is always something to behold. This offering has plenty of pepper, earth, and spice. Enjoy it with barbecue foods and pizza. It is puzzling why few California wineries try to emulate this great success story.
The popular Non Vintage Old Vine Red Lot #47 is another winner for consumers. A blend of primarily Zinfandel and a few other varietals, it exhibits a dark ruby color as well as copious aromas of berry fruit and spice, and excellent purity. It is a plush, bistro-styled red to enjoy over the next 1-2 years.