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Cline Cellars – 2011 Live Oak Zinfandel

I’m finding this time in quarantine to be a wonderful time to drink those wines I’ve been holding on to. This week I finally opened up a 2011 Cline Cellars Live Oak Zinfandel from Contra Costa County.

I love Cline wines and I love what they do. They practice their own sustainable farming they have named “The Green String Method.” With minimal human intervention, they use sheep and goats to clear the weeds from the vineyard and cover crops to feed the soil. They reuse all organic waste and compost it, then introduce it into the vineyard through the drip irrigation system. Volcanic rock is crushed to add minerals to the earth and owls are used for pest control. Furthermore, 100% of the energy used on the farm is solar.

These sustainable practices are not only good for the environment, but the wines are also absolutely fantastic! I used to belong to the wine club because I love every one of their wines and their winemaking style. Big, bold, delicious!

The 2011 Live Oak Zinfandel has been in my collection since its release, and it did not disappoint.  Dark garnet in color, there were lovely aromas of candied violets, boysenberry jam, and toasty baking spices. There was a good amount of acid on the palate with well-balanced tannins. Honeyed dates, stewed black fruits, cinnamon, and Turkish Delight flavors lingered in a long finish on my tongue. Delightful indeed!

I would have liked to enjoy this with braised lamb shank or a nice grilled rib-eye, however, I did manage to have it with a luxurious chunk of gorgonzola cheese. Cheers to deeply pleasurable moments and wines during this time!

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