Tasting Lodi Zinfandel, 2017 Releases – Michael David, Fields Family, Ironstone, and Harney Lane

November 15 was National Zinfandel Day, and there’s nowhere that is more associated with zinfandel than Lodi, California.

In honor of the occasion, LOCA — the trade group for Lodi — got four winemakers together to present their recent releases — all old vine bottlings — and talk about all things zin. Here’s a look at everything we tasted.

2014 Michael David Earthquake Zinfandel – A standard-bearer for Lodi zin, this is a mix of bold fruit and wood smoke that cries for a barbecued pork rib. The sweetness otherwise dominates before a somewhat acidic, plummy finish arrives. B / $20

2014 Fields Family Zinfandel Stampede Vineyard – A lighter style of zin, this one’s bright cherry with a lacing of cinnamon, with supple vanilla underneath. Proof that zin doesn’t have to punch you in the jaw. A- / $28

2015 Ironstone Zinfandel Reserve Ancient Vines Rous Vineyard – Toasty on the nose with notes of baked bread and burnt matches, with lots of acidity on the palate. Bold blueberry and blackberry weave in some coffee bean and dark chocolate notes, mostly in a cohesive way. B+ / $24

2014 Harney Lane Zinfandel Lizzie James Vineyard – Inky, almost black, with notes of tobacco, leather, and charred wood. Intense raisin notes lead to a finish of balsamic and forest floor. Want an intense wine? You got it. B / $36

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