This wine was served pop and pour. It was actually quite ready to go out of the gate, which intrigued me since I have read here that this wine was locked up. Not here!! This wine was blackberry and blueberry all the way. Not jammy like a typical Paso zin. I don't really prefer that style. This one resembled Howell Mountain in a lot of ways -- very prominant blueberry and blackberry, but none of the vanilla or smoke or leather. This one was blueberry and blackberry, very fruit forward but not in a jammy way. The wine mellowed to a very peppery middle, and finished smooth. Medium bodied wine. Thomas Rivers Brown wine. I'm not sure that this one is 100 percent zinfandel in all honesty. Tastes like 5 percent Grenache and 5 percent Petit Sirah are here. I think it'll age for a few years, but ready to drink now with minimal coaxing.
Another great example of why you cannot generalize about a vintage. In 2011, the mountain fared differently than the valley. This was pop and pour from a mag over a 3 hour dinner at Acadiana in DC(fabulous restaurant, BTW). For me, this wine is not typical of the vineyard or varietal. I found it to be extremely well integrated with little evidence of pepper or tannins. The fruit really shines here. A really nice finish and good complement to Blackened Pork Chops, Grilled DelMonico Ribeye Steak and Lamb Shank. Everyone at the table commented how good the wine was with their main. Enjoy this wine now!
Popped, decanted, poured and followed for two plus hours. Large glasses, 23 oz. Atelier Cab/Merlot glasses. This is a very interesting wine, but not in a bad way. Interesting because I think I can taste where it is going, where it will be in another 5-10 years, but not because of premature aging. Behind the strong fruit (dark plum and cherry and blackberry) and background aromatics from some oak - like a very faint vanilla - there is meaty depth and earthiness that normally only shows up with age in a zinfandel. There are no signs of age from color (dark, almost impenetrable red), the cork was very tight, and the storage was fine, so I think it's just an extra level of complexity that makes this an outstanding wine. More cerebral than most Zins.
The one surprise is that I generally get a lot of up front pepper in Outpost and other Howell Mountain Zins. I got less pepper in this wine than in the '09 and '10.
Better than the prior two bottles of this wine already consumed in the past six months. Color was medium red. Scents were principally blackberry. Tastes were consistent with scents, plus some other dark berries like strawberry, with a little bit of spiciness.
Color was medium red. Scents were principally blackberry. Tastes were consistent with scents, plus some other dark berries like strawberry. Didn't have the other typical scents or tastes I wanted in a Zin.
Howell Mountain Spring Wine Tasting. Nose of ripe fruit, briar, touch of white pepper, more berry than cherry fruit, more of the same on the palate, medium/big body, smooth, slightly soft and a touch simple, tasty, long finish.
A darker expression of Zinfandel. Silky but gains the typical briar notes with air. Some fruit, pepper and heat, but well balanced. Amazing that a wine hits 15.3% abv in 2011, but that's Howell Mtn. (And a great winemaker). Drink from now on.
Really nice mountain zin. Fruit forward without being being jammy or overtly alcoholic, like some previous (16%+ ABV) versions of this wine. Not much in the spice department, but there is a nice savory undertone in the finish that adds complexity. Not sure it's worth $45, but I do like it.
This has got to be one of my favorite zins. First off I have a love affair with Howell Mtn. I love that mountain fruit. Now I'll admit that I don't love zins because they are so jammy and overly lush. Much to much pepper and spice and just like drinking jam or jelly liquified. This is much different. This is definitely a zin because on the nose and the taste it has that classic backbone but you can taste the howell mtn fruit. Much more structured. Some really nice tannins. The pepper notes are there but not overpowering or intrusive but rather tend to help this develop and open up. Beautiful bouquet on the nose and just exquisite when it hits midpalate. Nice finish as well. I'm looking at zins from Howell Mtn now because I had almost completely written them off.
Having a glass using my Coravin. As others have said, lots of dark berries and the nose and palate. I detect a hint of chocolate as well. This vintage is, at least to me, very different than previous. Less pepper and overall much more muted - even tame. Very well integrated. Approachable and enjoyable.
Color was medium red. Scents were principally blackberry. Tastes were consistent with scents, plus some other dark berries like strawberry. However, it was lacking the spicyness and other flavors (other than dark fruit) that I was expecting in a Zinfandel.
Somewhat jammy out of the gate. 30 min to an hour later it started to loosen up a bit. Ripe raspberry and then some blueberry. Well integrated oak and low acid. Soft tannins and ETOH in check. A bit of a crowd pleaser but not over the top and I'm lovin this today as well.