2015 Harrington Zinfandel, Zeni Ranch

(Mendocino Ridge, California) $30

Zinfandel (75%), Carignane, Mourvedre, Grenache, Alicante Bouchet, Mission, Norton, Palomino, Chasselas

Brian Harrington toils away in his San Francisco winery, minding his Trousseau, Alvarelho and a dozen other wines that are likely to become intriguing bottles some day. Anyone who wants to start a wine collection, but is on a budget should try these wines. Some are meant for early drinking but others, such as the Zinfandel, Nebbiolo and Pinot Noir are built to last.

Vineyard: This vineyard has been in the Zeni family for five generations and has never seen any chemicals. It is ten miles north of the Anderson Valley and eight miles from the coast at 2000 feet above sea level. The block Harrington uses is a Zinfandel dominant field blend planted in 1880.

Farming: Practicing organic.

Vinification: Three-day cold soak, co-fermented, punched down once a day and aged in neutral French oak for six months. Unfined and unfiltered.

Tasting Note: Brambly berry fruit with herbal overtones.

Food Pairing: Lentils cooked with thyme and olive oil, braised meats.

Drinkability: Now and over the next three to five years.

13.8% alcohol

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