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1998 Turley "Duarte" Contra Costa County Zinfandel

SKU #945114 93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Turley's great success is the terrific 1998 Zinfandel Duarte Vineyard. Made from one of their oldest vineyards (104-year old vineyard planted in pure sand), whose grapes achieved 15.8% alcohol naturally, it is the finest Duarte yet produced. An explosive nose of black cherry jam ascends from the glass. In the mouth, cherry liqueur notes continue in this full-bodied, super-endowed, luxuriously rich, opulent, fat, juicy Zinfandel. It is a hedonistic turn-on for sure. (RP)  (6/2000)

91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Bright, deep ruby. Pungent aromas of spicy blackberry, espresso and cracked pepper, complicated by a bright floral note. Sweet and pliant, with lovely depth of blackberry flavor. Not hugely dense but offers lovely lightness of touch and balance. Finishes spicy, fresh and long, with a hint of maple syrup and fine tannins. This is every bit as strong as the '97. (ST)  (5/2000)

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Price: $44.99

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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.


- 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.
Specific Appellation:

Central Valley/Lodi

- With a reputation for bulk wine and table grapes, little to no quality wine has emerged from the expansive Central Valley since companies like Franzia and Gallo staked their claim here. The exception are new wine ventures in sub-AVAs Lodi and Clarksburg, home to jammy zinfandels and surprisingly distinguished chenin blancs respectively.