Bucklin Winery was founded in 2000 by the four Bucklin siblings: Arden, Kate, Ted and Will. Will Bucklin has been a vintner for over 25 years, working in France, Australia, Sonoma, Mendocino and Oregon. Bucklin produces several Zinfandels and Grenache, a Cabernet Sauvignon and a White Field Blend.
Old Hill Ranch is a historic jewel. It was founded by William McPherson Hill in 1851. The vineyard came into the Bucklin family when it was purchased in 1981. Bucklin, Once & Future, Carlisle and Bedrock are the sole producers of wine from the vineyard.
The “Ancient Field Blend” is from a 12 acre block of vines that were planted in 1885. The vineyard is a mosaic of over two dozen grape varieties — primarily Zinfandel, but also Grenache, Alicante Bouchet, Petite Sirah, Mourvedre, Syrah, Carignane, and Tempranillo, to name a few. The grapes are co-fermented together. 12 Acres, 30 grape varieties, 1 wine.
Dark crimson in color. 15.3% ABV. Sublime nose of red fruits, cherry truffles and pepper. Medium to full bodied with mouth watering acidity and notable balance. The purity of fruit here is remarkable. Kirsch liqueur, raspberry compote, cocoa and pepper. Tremendous length on the finish. It is only January but I have little doubt this will be one of the best Zinfandels I drink this year. I’ll open my last bottle in 2025.
My rating: 96 points.
Bucklin gets very little press but I would highly suggest visiting their website and ordering a few bottles. The 2021 vintage of this wine will be released later this year.
I wrote about Bucklin previously in A Visit with Will Bucklin at Old Hill Ranch. I wrote about Old Hill Ranch in Top 10 Old Vine Zinfandel Vineyards.