Random Musings

Top 10 Zinfandels Tasted in 2018

It is the time of the year where every wine blogger publishes their lists of Wines of the Year or Values of the Year, etc. Although I try to blog about all the wines I taste it is clear that Zinfandel is definitely my grape of choice. With that in mind here are my top 10 Zinfandels of 2018 and my rating for each.

The link for each wine will take you to the detailed Bottle Note on Zinfandel Chronicles. All of the older wines were stored in my cellar since release. Wines that received the same score are not listed in any particular order. This is the 5th version of my Top 10 Zinfandel list.

  1. 2010 Turley Zinfandel Cedarman – 95 points.
  2. 2011 Carlisle Zinfandel Carlisle Vineyard– 95 points.
  3. 2013 Carlisle Zinfandel Papera Ranch – 95 points.
  4. 2015 Once & Future Wine Zinfandel Old Vine Bedrock Vineyard – 95 points.
  5. 2015 Hartford Family Winery Zinfandel Old Vine – 95 points.
  6. 2010 A. Rafanelli Zinfandel – 94 points.
  7. 2009 Turley Zinfandel Dogtown Vineyard – 94 points.
  8. 2013 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Monte Rosso Vineyard – 93 points.
  9. 2013 Bedrock Wine Co. Zinfandel Carlisle Vineyard – 93 points
  10. 2015 AldenAlli Zinfandel Limerick Lane Vineyard – 93 points.

A few observations after compiling the list:

  • Once and Future, Hartford Family and AldenAlli all cracked the list for the first time going back to 2014.
  • Carlisle, Bedrock and Turley are the only wineries represented in each list since 2014.
  • 2013 looks to be shaping up as a great year for Zinfandel.
  • Exceptional producers like Turley, Carlisle and Rafanelli can make great wines in inferior vintages like ’10 and ’11.
  • Carlisle Vineyard should be in the conversation with great vineyards like Papera, Montafi and Monte Rosso.
  • It is worth noting that two blends (multiple vineyards) made the list: Turley Cedarman and Hartford Family.

Last year’s list can be found here.

What was the best Zinfandel you opened this year?

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4 thoughts on “Top 10 Zinfandels Tasted in 2018

  1. Great list, I have had a number of them. I would include:

    2006 Ridge Geyserville
    14 Bedrock Evangelho Vyd
    13 Carlisle Carlise Vyd
    13 Limerick Lane 1910 Block

    1. I only included wines where I did a full tasting note on Zinfandel Chronicles. Otherwise I would have likely included the ’15 Limerick Lane 1910 that I tried in late August at the winery.

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