2013 Turley "Judge Bell" Amador Valley Zinfandel

SKU #1229399 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2013 Zinfandel Judge Bell comes from a block of vines planted in 1907 known as Picnic Hill Block in the Story Vineyard. These are classic head-pruned, dry-farmed, ungrafted vines planted eight years before the beginning of World War I. One of the best Amador Zinfandels I’ve ever tasted, this wine displays plenty of briary raspberry, black and red cherry as well as boysenberry fruit, good underlying structure, some earth, pepper, meat and spice. It is full-bodied, rich, heady, and somehow manages to brilliantly conceal a whopping 16.2% natural alcohol. Of course, a wine like this would be excoriated by the “in pursuit of balance” crowd, but this is what balance is all about – what looks to be a mind-numbing amount of alcohol is incredibly well-concealed. This wine should drink well for 8-10 years.  (4/2015)

93 points Vinous

 The 2013 Zinfandel Judge Bell Vineyard is a wine of impact and pure power. Dark, intense and voluptuous, the 2013 packs a serious punch. Sweet dark cherry, plum, spice, menthol and new leather build to the huge, powerful finish. The Judge Bell is not especially subtle, but it sure has plenty of class and personality-Antonio Galloni writing for Vinous.com  (10/2015)

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Price: $54.99
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- The bid to name Zinfandel California's "State Varietal" may have failed, but this red wine grape, grown extensively in California since the mid-1800s, is grown in few other places in the world. Sadly, much of what's cultivated today is planted where it's too hot and flat. But when planted to well-drained, hillside vineyards that are warm but not too hot, like those in Sonoma County's Dry Creek Valley and Amador County in the Sierra Foothills, Zinfandel can produce wines with plenty of character. High in natural alcohol and tannin, grown carefully it can be rich and complex, with dark fruit berry fruit and peppery spice. The most known example of Zinfandel outside of California is Italy's Primitivo, which can be similar in style, but is often a bit lighter and less alcoholic than West Coast examples.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Sierra Foothills/El Dorado

- This sweeping inland territory (an AVA on its own right), encompassing El Dorado, Fiddletown, Shenandoah and Amador, has been on the grape-growing map since the Gold Rush. With the exception of high-altitude El Dorado, the vineyards here are sun-baked and hot—in other words, best suited to old-vine zinfandel, petit sirah and Rhône varietals. The cooler climes of El Dorado are ideal for cabernet, chardonnay and merlot.