Starting with only a handful of purchased grapes in 1978, Marietta Cellars has been a standout winery in Sonoma and Mendocino since the very beginning. Founded by Chris Bilbro, a Sonoma County native with winemaking roots dating back three generations, Marietta rose to prominence with its revolutionary Old Vine Red, a California red blend that essentially created the category.
That’s probably while to this day, they’re probably making the best Old Vine Red in California, and certainly Parker’s Wine Advocate agrees. A 95-point score from the world’s most respected publication for a wine that is under $20 on bottle 1 is almost completely unheard of.
OVR Lot Number 73 is bright and juicy, with strawberry and black raspberry supported by savory notes of briar and slate. The fruity and fresh Zinfandel from 2020 is given added complexity and length by barrel aged Syrah and Petite Sirah from 2019 and 2018. A touch of Grenache and Barbera add a more complex red fruit character and hint of red licorice and white pepper.
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95 Points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
“The NV OVR Lot 73 is composed mainly of Zinfandel with smaller portions of Syrah, Petite Sirah, Carignan and Barbera. Medium ruby, it offers intense red cherry, blood orange and apricot perfume with accents of rooibos tea leaves, red licorice, saline, lilac and loads of spicy nuances. The medium-bodied palate is light on its feet with soft tannins, bursts of refreshing acidity and detailed amaro accents on the long finish. This is so easy to drink!”