I like the vibe from Dark Horse, a new Dry Creek winery. It calls itself "The wine for cowboys, not to mention cowgirls, cowhands, hell, even the cows themselves. Pigs and chickens too."
Michael Loykasek is the winemaker, a veteran from this northern Sonoma appellation, who worked at Meeker and Armida before starting his own label, and he consults for De La Montoya and Hauck Cellars.
The Dark Horse Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley Treborce Vineyard 2005 ($28, 650 cases) is a real discovery, which Tim Fish and I came across in yesterday's blnd tasting of new releases. This dark-hued wine is a mix of rich, rustic Sonoma Zinfandel flavors, with huckleberry, cracked pepper, sage and underbrush notes.
Loykasek also produces a Russian River Zin and Dry Creek Cabernet, which I haven’t tasted, but given the quality of the Treborce Zin, I’m chomping at the bit.