Four Vines Winery celebrates California Zinfandel with an array of rebellious wine names like Maverick and Biker, though they've added a "naked" Chardonnay. As is typically the case, they're not making 100% pure Zinfandel, but rather using creative blends that may surprise you. In the hands of a talented winemaker, adding that 5% Petite Sirah or 8% Tempranillo or some other grape might be just the right thing that brings balance to the strong, sunbaked California Zinfandel grapes.
2012 Four Vines Naked Unoaked Chardonnay
Santa Barbara County
$11, 13.9% abv.
Big ripe peach flavors, firm acidity, big mouthfeel. Another affordable unoaked Chardonnay that I would recommend for a nice weekend lunch here in this mild spring we're having.
2011 Four Vines Truant Old Vine Zinfandel
90% Zinfandel, 7% Barbera, 3% Other Red Grapes
$11, 14.4% abv.
Deep black cherry and blueberry. Medium tannins and a tart acidity with a long finish. The notes mention that some of the fruit was sourced from Lodi, which means that I may have walked through the gnarled old vines that contributed to this particular bottling.
Note: These wines were provided as samples for review.