Sunday, April 19, 2015

Wine Review: Marietta Old Vine Red Lot Number 61

I recently had a customer that was so adamant about a wine that it was inspiring. He wanted to order a case for himself and said we should carry it as well. He went on to talk about Robert Parker's longtime admiration for the wine, described the wine perfectly with glowing eyes, and recalled past lot numbers and how they fared in reviews. When I went to get him a case price I saw that it was from a distributor we normally don't deal with and it would be a three case drop just to have it delivered. I saw no problem with taking in two cases to stack based on his recommendation.

That wine was Marietta Old Vine Red Lot Number 61. When it came in I bought a bottle for myself and now I'm about to have it for the first time.

What Marietta attempts to do with this wine is imitate the classic field blends of Sonoma and Mendocino, where different grape varieties grew together and were crushed together. It's non-vintage, probably a blend of vintages from 2010 to 2013, and mostly Zinfandel. The other grapes involved are Carignan, Gamay and Petite Sirah.

Just from the pour and the smell I can tell this is going to be a big boy. It's got a very rich look to it, thick in density and a dark ruby color.

It's quickly realized that aromas of big, candied, sticky fruit aggressively want to get out out of its containment and into the air. Upon further nosing around and analyzing, those aromas are more specifically date palms, black cherries, strawberry and cracked pepper. Even though it's 13.5% ABV the ethanol is quite potent on the nose. You know I love that.

The palate starts off bright and then descends into darkness with black currant, plum and licorice. The body is somewhere between medium to full. The tannin, however, is saliva stripping. It finishes hot and spicy with a bit of plum.

Wowza. That was good. And, as you know, I'm not that big of a fan of Zinfandel.

I know a few people that will drink this up once they try it. Now I just have to talk them into spending a few bucks above their comfort level. It'll be worth it for them if they do. This is about as fantastic as a $17 red gets.

Price: $17
Rating: 4.5/5 = Recommended / Highly Recommended.
(what does that mean?)

The bottle used was purchased by myself for the purpose of this review.


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