Cline Cellars Ancient Vines Zinfandel 2018 14.5 % abv 75cl
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Established by Fred Cline in 1982, Cline Cellars was initially based in Oakley before moving in the 1990s to a 350-acre farm in Carneros Valley. Since then the family-run winery has specialised in producing delicious red wines crafted from Zinfandel and from Rhone varietals like Syrah and Mourvedre.
One key focus of the winery is sustainability and the estate is proud to be a Certified California Sustainable Vineyard and Winery. Highlights include building the largest solar-panelled winery in California and a flock of 2000 sheep and goats which are used instead of herbicides to remove weeds. The winery also provides raptor perches and owl boxes to encourage these natural predators to control pests like mice and gophers.
The family’s Ancient Vines Zinfandel is made with fruit from the estate’s oldest plots in Contra Costa County which are dry-farmed to ensure deliciously concentrated and intense flavours in the fruit. On the nose there are enticing crushed cassis and blackberry notes as well as cigar box spice from the 10 months of ageing in American oak barrels. The punchy flavour profile makes this ideal for pairing with rich beef stews or for keeping in the cellar for a few more years.