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2012 Gnarly Head Old Vine Zinfandel

July 30, 2015 - Norman Bentley

About ten years back, a good friend of mine in the wine business introduced me to a winery out in Lodi, California which was producing some pretty tasty wines for a very reasonable price. My first experience was with the Gnarly Head Old Vine Zinfandel, and I was quite impressed. Of course my salesman friend Tom, is one of the good guys, and I have always trusted his recommendations. Good wine for a good price is something we all search for, and so far the folks at Gnarly Head have not let me down.

The 2012 Old Vine Zin that we picked up the other day had a nose which was so rich in dark berries, that I thought I was out in the brier patch, and the flavor made you think that you had just dived into a bushel basket of hot juicy blackberries. The blackberry presence can best be described as jammy, with a touch of cherry and spice mixed in. The finish is long and clean with a small dash of toasty oak. We truly enjoyed this bottle, and I understand the 2013 vintage has just hit the market, and may even be a touch better.

We paired the Gnarly Head Zinfandel with Italian meatloaf, a family favorite, but I have enjoyed it many times in the past with a big plate of spaghetti marinara. Throw in a Caesar salad and some warm bread and you have a most enjoyable meal. The Old Vine Zin is also an excellent companion for baby back ribs, or other types of barbeque. Norm's score is 89.

score: 89

price: $ 9 - $11


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