Orin Swift Eight Years in the Desert California Red 2018


Fans of Californian wine will know that the local zinfandel is worth hunting down. Sometimes I find zin a bit too big which makes this wine a nice change. It’s 56% zinfandel with a good dose of petite syrah, syrah and grenache. It’s a good mix that takes the edge off zin’s potent power and adds some attractive complexity.

Deeply coloured, this wine starts with explosive fruits; bright raspberry, cherry, Christmas cake (thanks zinfandel) with subtle earth and spice fitting in with some toasty oak. It’s a big wine in the mouth showing layers of red and dark berry fruits with generous alcohol, that fits the style, which then finishes quite supple with an edge of drying tannins. At its best right now, this wine will be best enjoyed with a flame-grilled Porterhouse steak.