2014 Zinfandels Could Rock Your World
I've been drinking Zinfandel for 30 years, and reviewing it for Wine Spectator a decade now, and the 2014s just might be the most pleasurable Zins I've ever tasted. Are they the best ever? It's too soon to tell, I haven't tasted enough to judge yet, but so far they're balanced, delicious and often exceptional.
It has been a decent run for Zinfandel in recent years. The 2010 and 2011 vintages had challenges but many excellent, well-structured wines came out of them. 2012 produced fruit-forward, soft and approachable Zins, but without much backbone. As good as the 2013s are—and they're the focus of my annual report, in the upcoming June 30 issue—the 2014s have a level of excitement that I'm just beginning to define.
I've tasted perhaps 40 percent of the major Zin players' 2014 offerings so far.
Bedrock winemaker Morgan Twain-Peterson has already produced six outstanding wines, including Bedrock Oakville Farmhouse Oakville 2014 (94, $75) and Bedrock Zinfandel California Old Vine 2014 (91, $27.) The widely available Seghesio Zinfandel Sonoma County Sonoma 2014 (93, $24) proves that veteran winemaker Ted Seghesio still knows his stuff.
The 2014 vintage also seems promising for value wines, which seem to reflect much of the same balance and drinking pleasure of the best wines.
This is going to be a fun year for Zin lovers.