Bottle Notes, Zinfandel

Zinfandel of the Month – 2017 Bucklin Ancient Field Blend Old Hill Ranch

Zinfandel of the Month is a regular feature on Zinfandel Chronicles. Keep in mind that although the Zinfandel of the Month might be an older bottle, the current vintage will be one you can find at retail or via the mailing list.

The September Zinfandel of the Month is the 2017 Bucklin Ancient Field Blend Old Hill Ranch.

I chose this wine as my Zinfandel of the Month as I am excited for the release of the 2021 version later this month. If you are a fan of Zinfandel from historic old vine vineyards you will want to have this wine in your cellar.

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.

Crimson in color. 14.8% ABV. Stunning nose of red fruits, licorice and herbs. Medium body with mouth watering acidity. Tremendous purity of fruit and exceptional balance are the hallmarks of this Zinfandel. Cherry, raspberry liqueur and white pepper on the palate. Tremendous length on the finish. Bucklin hit the ball out of the park in the challenging ’17 vintage. Awesome Zinfandel that will drink well for another 2-3 years.

My rating: 94 points.

Bucklin gets very little press but I would highly suggest visiting their website and ordering a few bottles and put your name on the mailer to get access to the 2021 vintage of Ancient Field Blend.

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.

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