2010 Three Wine Company Old Vines Zinfandel Contra Costa County
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4.01 out of 5 stars!
Member Reviews:

***** Three Wine Zinfandel Rocks
The 2009 Three Wine Company Old Vines Zinfandel is simply delicious, delivering everything one expects and enjoys in a medium to full bodied Zin. Approachable young, it has staying power, too. Soft tannins, copious black fruit, and perfectly balanced acidity make for pure drinking pleasure at a very attractive price.
-- Gordon from Pasadena, MD

***** Old Vines Zinfandel Conta Costa County
Nice, smooth on palate unlike some Zinfandels.
-- John from Playa Del Rey, CA

***** SUPERB!
Although it will age much longer, this is drinking exceptionally well right now. Yum! (What wine was the two-star rated drinker drinking?)
-- John from Sierra Madre, CA

***** More please
I have only recently begun purchasing wines through Wine Access and so any rating and comment has to be considered with this in mind. That said, of the wines that I have purchased, both my wife and I enjoyed this one the most, and we look forward to drinking what we have left, and hope that this will be a regular offering. Fortunately, I only live an hour from the winery so I can always go and buy it that way.
-- Andreas from Berkley, CA

This wine was and is excellent. Unfortunately, more is not available - I would have bought at least two more cases. More like this please!
-- Frae from Fountain Hills, AZ

As Easy As Our Job Gets

As Napa and Sonoma stole the 20th century limelight, little thought was given to the gnarly old vines planted by Italian immigrants in the deep beds of Delhi sand in Contra Costa County. All that changed in 1985 when a young graduate of UC Davis returned to his family's farm in Oakley. His name was Matt Cline.

Over the course of the next few years, the inquisitive Cline rekindled friendships with third generation farmers who continued to tend these pristine, phylloxera-immune vineyards, largely forgotten since the turn of the 20th century. One by one, Cline made handshake deals, laying claim to hundreds of acres of what are now 100+-year-old bush plants -- each of which ekes out a tiny crop of some of the juiciest BB-sized clusters on the coast.

We've known Matt for years. We've walked the Delhi sand of Oakley dozens of times with him, been mesmerized by the voluptuous red and blue fruit density and ethereal old vine aromatics of his powerhouse reds. We've shared all-you-can-eat $7.99 roast beef lunches at Mac's Old House and early-morning bacon, eggs and Zinfandel on our way to SFO. Back in 2007, Matt and Erin were launching "Three" just as the Dow collapsed. The Clines came to WineAccess for help, and we stood tall. Thousands of cases of these deep, dark, low pH reds, drawn from incredible century-old vines planted in the early 1900s by guys named Lucchesi, Spinelli and Evangelho, made a beeline for member cellars.

We told our membership that the Three Old Vine Field Blend, and this staggering Old Vine Zinfandel, are among the greatest under-$20 bargains on the coast. The ratings that poured in from buyers corroborated our view. Over the last two years, those two wines have garnered more than 800 4- and 5-star ratings from buyers, and more glowing reviews than any like-priced ancient-vine reds from either side of the Atlantic. Throw in the ratings for the entire roster of Three Wines we've offered, including the Live Oak and Evangelho Zinfandels, and single-vineyard Carignane and Mataro (2,543 4- and 5-star ratings!!!), and it becomes apparent that Matt Cline may have the deftest hand with old-vine reds of anyone currently operating on the coast.

If you were lucky enough to snag a case of the '09 Old Vine Zinfandel, there's a good chance you've already hit the buy button. If you missed out, here's your shot at the lusher, more complex follow-up from the miracle summer of 2010.

The coolest growing season on record would prove ideal for the coast's most temperamental variety, marrying wild blackberry opulence with riveting acid backbone. These gnarly old vines would eke out just a few clusters per vine. Showing no sign whatsoever of desiccation or shrivel, the berries were small and juicy. Skins were thick, but seeds were brown, tannins perfectly mature, paving way for a Zinfandel that, like his Evangelho vineyard bottling, Cline describes as one of the sleekest and most sophisticated of his career.

Dark purple, with aromas of crushed blackberries, violet, boysenberry, a splash of cherry liqueur, and peppery, sweet herb high tones. Phenomenally rich on the attack, but still elegant and sophisticated, speaking to the deep roots of these 105+-year-old plants. Packed with wild blackberries, cherry liqueur and notes of coffee, dense and chewy, all buttressed by old vine, supple tannin cut.

Tasting Notes

2010 Three Wine Company Old Vines Zinfandel Contra Costa County
"77% Zinfandel, 16% Petite Sirah, 4% Carignane, 1% Mataro, and 2% Alicante Bouschet.
Dark purple. Notes of crushed blackberries, violet, a splash of cherry liqueur, and peppery, sweet herb high tones on the nose. Phenomenally rich on the attack, yet surprisingly sleek, speaking to the deep roots of these 105+ year old plants. Packed with wild blackberries, cherry liqueur and notes of coffee, dense and chewy, all buttressed by old vine, supple tannin cut. Drink now or age for 5-7 years in a cool cellar. Serve in oversized Riedel, and remember to let it breathe; air is this wine's best friend."
-- WineAccess Travel Log

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