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Four Vines The Maverick Zinfandel 2012

Zinfandel from Amador, Sierra Foothills, California
  • TP90
  • WE90
14.8% ABV
  • WS89
  • WS90
  • WS90
  • WS89
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3.8 7 Ratings
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3.8 7 Ratings
14.8% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Zealous for Zin? Then you'll be amped for Amador. Known for intense, earthy qualities derived from fiery red volcanic soils, amazing Amador comes to life in our Maverick Zinfandel. Innovation, exceptionalism and excellence are the American qualities you'll find sip after sip. Designed for epicures who have a bit of an edge, this wine shines after the road trip is over and the live music has begun.

A key signature of Amador County Zins is a brambly, wild berry character. Four Vines Maverick Zin packs plenty of bramble with notes of of tobacco, leather and black pepper. Tannins are well integrated and the wine is nicely balanced. It's full-bodied with enough acidity to pair well with food. Think big flavors and rich meats when serving this wine. Pour alongside smoked ribs, lamb or a juicy grilled steak.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
TP 90
Tasting Panel
Silky and juicy with generous red fruit and spice; rich, fresh and lively with bright, fresh tangy flavors; long and balanced.
WE 90
Wine Enthusiast
This is tasty in a ripe, extravagantly fruity way. Raspberry and strawberry aromas seem as sweet as syrup. The full body and alcoholic strength give it a strong texture, but without too much tannic grip. Barbecued ribs or a cheese plate could be great matches.
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Four Vines

Four Vines

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Four Vines, Amador, Sierra Foothills, California
In 1994 Four Vines Winery kicked into gear featuring eclectic, appellation-specific Zins, and one kick-ass no-oak "Naked" Chardonnay. They named their Zins Biker, The Sophisticate and Maverick. Rich, succulent, fruit-generous wines that pair incredibly well with food. The winery relocated to Paso Robles where they began experimenting with Rhone varietals; bigger, headier wines that are positively explosive in flavor and form. No matter the wine, Four Vines has always brought a refreshing, irreverent attitude to the industry. Today, the winery sources fruit from all over the state of California and crushes mainly on the Central Coast and in Sonoma County. This allows grapes to arrive at their peak of cool morning temperatures to the crush pad. It all starts in the vineyard…don't let anyone tell you anything else. In late 2010, Derek Benham acquired Four Vines from its founders and moved the winery operations back up north to Sonoma County where it originally started. Four Vines is now in a position to reach its full potential as a category leader in Unoaked Chardonnay and Zinfandel. The story continues...

As the lower part of the greater Sierra Foothills appellation, Amador is roughly a plateau whose vineyards grow at 1,200 to 2,000 feet in elevation. It is 100 miles east of both San Francisco and Napa Valley. Most of its wineries are in the oak-studded rolling hillsides of Shenandoah Valley or east in Fiddletown, where elevations are slightly higher.

The Sierra Foothills growing area was among the largest wine producers in the state during the gold rush of the late 1800s. The local wine industry enjoyed great success until just after the turn of the century when fortune-seekers moved elsewhere and its population diminished. With Prohibition, winemaking was totally abandoned, along with its vineyards. But some of these, especially Zinfandel, still remain and are the treasure chest of the Sierra Foothills as we know them.

Most Amador vines are planted in volcanic soils derived primarily from sandy clay loam and decomposed granite. Summer days are hot but nighttime temperatures typically drop 30 degrees and the humidity is low, making this an ideal environment for grape growing. Because there is adequate rain throughout the year and even snow in the winter, dry farming is possible.

Zinfandel

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Unapologetically powerful, heady, and fruit-forward, Zinfandel is often thought of as a truly Californian grape, though in fact it is anything but. This variety has followed an intriguing trajectory to reach its adoptive home, beginning, surprisingly, in Croatia. Originally known as Tribidrag, it first made its way to southern Italy where it became known as Primitivo. From there it eventually migrated to what is now unarguably its most successful outpost, in California, and has thrived throughout the state. Of course, this is also the grape of White Zinfandel, a sweet pink wine that enjoyed great popularity in the 1980s and 90s. Though White Zin still has a significant following, today the variety is increasingly associated with the red version.

In the Glass

Zinfandel commonly features a bold, plush texture and notes of dark plum, blackberry, sweet spice, black pepper, dark chocolate, leather, and licorice, and can often be described as “jammy” and a little bit sweet. Very ripe examples may express a hint of dried fruit like raisin, fig, or prune. Despite its significant alcohol and weight, Zinfandel has very smooth, gentle tannins.

Perfect Pairings

Zinfandel is a powerfully flavored wine, mingling happily with bold food like brisket, lamb shanks, pork ribs, or anything barbecued. If care is taken with regards to alcohol levels, Zinfandel’s hint of sweetness can work well with milder Indian-spiced dishes like lamb curry.

Sommelier Secret

Thanks to its popularity both for home winemaking and as communion wine, many Zinfandel vines were able to survive prohibition, leading to the abundance of "old vine" Zinfandels. These low-yielding vines tend to produce wine that is concentrated, complex, and elegant.

PBC9127640_2012 Item# 138134