2020 Bedrock Wine Co, Old Vine Zinfandel, California.
As the Fall weather takes hold here in California and you are looking for something to warm you up and to enjoy with richer cuisine, wines like this Old Vine Zin from Bedrock really hit the spot with dark fruit, a dusting of spices and a satiny full body this wine is eager to please. Coming from a wide collection of old vine sites throughout California, including Sonoma and Contra Costa counties, this 2020 saw grapes sourced from vines that average 80 years old and with some much older than 100, so you are really tasting history here, rather than a single site, terroir or vineyard, but blended to showcase the grape in its best character or quality. With 2020, there was always going to be a concern about smoke taint, which fortunately is not the case case here, with only unaffected grapes being part of the Old Vine Zinfandel, some of which is luck, as Zin ripens early and missed some of the worst of fires, as well as the winery only choosing areas without problems, so you can be confident in Bedrock’s 2020 vintage, and this wine is proof. The palate is fruit dense with layers of crushed black raspberries, Italian cherries, plums and currants, which is accented by classic bramble and briar spices, sweet cedar, minty herbs and dried flowers with a bright pop of acidity and a hint of fig paste. The Old Vine Zinfandel includes a who’s who of top Zin sites with Teldeschi Ranch, Beeson, Sodini, Nervo, Dommen, Pagani, Papera, Evangelho, Pato, Katushas’ and of course Bedrock all playing roles here.
Bedrock Wine Co is run by Morgan Twain-Peterson, who’s family has a significant history making Zinfandel in California, with his dad Joel Peterson, famous for crafting some of the best Zins of the 1980s and 1990s under his ex Ravenswood label, with Morgan carrying on the traditions, but with the added responsibility of caring for two of the state’s most prized old vine Heritage vineyards, their namesake Bedrock, in the Sonoma Valley and Evangelho in the deep sands of Contra Costa County. In the winemaking, Bedrock’s main mission is to keep things simple and let the grapes do the talking, with Morgan saying that they try to use native yeast and natural fermentation(s) without additions, similar to how Ridge and Turley do their Zinfandel based wines, with the Zinfandel lots being made with almost entirely de-stemmed grapes, even though the winery embraces whole-cluster fermentation in their other varietals. Bedrock ultimately for their wines, focus on ideal ripeness, freshness and aromatics in their offerings and age their wines in top notch oak. Bedrock’s most prized wines are field blends which include many black grapes, but with this Old Vine Zinfandel there is a more single varietal style than their other efforts, with the finished blend being about 85% Zinfandel, plus 7% Carignan, 4% Cinsault and, as Twain-Peterson notes, there is also, bits and bobs of Grand Noir, Petite Sirah, Alicante Bouschet and other field-blended varieties. With this entry level wine, Bedrock wants to express generosity and release a wine that can be enjoyed in its youth, as this 2020 succeeds in doing, and it is drinking nicely indeed.
($25 Est.) 91 Points, grapelive