Review: Wines of The Prisoner, 2021 Releases
The Prisoner line of wines continues to expand with the release of a new pinot noir, which joins three other “Prisoner” branded wines — not to mention the plethora of other wines produced by the company under different labels.
Today we look at the new pinot, plus the latest releases of everything else from The Prisoner lineup. Let’s dig in.
2019 The Prisoner Chardonnay Carneros – Lightly oaked and lightly spiced, this wine offers gentle vanilla notes up top that complement the apple, alongside a healthy spray of cinnamon and powdered ginger notes. Creamy but not overblown, the finish is clean and touched lightly with lemon, though oaky vanilla is never far off. Moderate in complexity, with a nice balance on the whole. A- / $40
2019 The Prisoner Pinot Noir Sonoma Coast – This brooding, savory expression of pinot noir offers hoary elements of roast beef and bacon fat, eventually sliding into more of a fruit-driven character that features cherries and blackberries, filtered through a skin of dark chocolate. A sense of balance is never really reached here, the wine finishing on a somewhat balsamic note that evokes overripe fruit and sherried mushrooms. Scattered, to be sure, and really pricy. B- / $55
2018 The Prisoner Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley – Inky and flush with fruit, this brooding wine loads up currents and dark cherry notes, with dark chocolate heavy on the back end. A gingery Christmas spice emerges on the finish, adding some subtlety to what is otherwise a straight-and-narrow experience, a deep dive into berries at their absolute ripest. B+ / $55
2019 The Prisoner Red Wine California – The original Prisoner: a blend of zinfandel, cabernet sauvignon, petite sirah, syrah, and charbono. Chocolate and vanilla hit up top, with a rich layer of black raspberry and black cherry following soon after. There’s a beefy savoriness in the background, but it’s understated and, frankly, washed out by the sweeter elements in the mix. The finish retreats to creamy vanilla and a hint of licorice; some bottle time might help things coalesce here, but functionally The Prisoner has always felt designed to be consumed young. B+ / $49
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