When I first tasted this wine in 2013, I thought it was almost too big and powerful. I wanted to come back to it in 5 or 10 years. I have come back to it several times since, and this is the first time that it seemed to me ready to drink and enjoy.
Deep and dark. Lovely scents of red and black berries, flowers, earth, spice and, yes, plenty of oak. Has opened up considerably since the last bottle (2016) with ripe fruit flavors on the palate. But the tannins are still prominent. And by the end of the meal, the 15.3% alcohol begins to show. Lots of ripe fruit, but my tongue cries for less alcohol, less tannin and more acid.
Old Hill Ranch is one of the oldest vineyards in California, and this "Zinfandel" is actually a field blend of many grapes: Grenache, Alicante Bouschet, Petite Sirah, Mourvedre, Carignane, Syrah, Temperanillo, Tannat, Grand Noir and even a few others, all growing on gnarled, tree-like vines.