Home Winners > Winners 2020 > Zinfandel

Winner Details


Zinfandel is in a good place in SWA. For several years now we’ve been getting really good wines in here – but it’s required something of a mind-shift on the part of our tasters.

They no longer see Zin as a cheap and cheerful glugger (on which its reputation was largely founded way back when). Instead, it’s a distinctive variety, aimed at dedicated Zin-lovers – and in that context, quality, rather than sheer price, is the key factor. There were some really good wines in the £10-20 area here this year, and our tasters were happy to reward them with high medals.

From The Tasting Teams

‘Zinfandel is a high-alcohol wine, but some were really overdone and the balance wasn’t quite there. The best were gastronomically driven, with good balance, not overly extracted and with depth of flavours.’ Laurent Richet MS, team leader

‘Zindandel is one of those grapes that if it gets too much sun, or you do anything wrong, it shows in the bottle. It comes out as harsh, boozy and unbalanced. But when we got to the higher price points there was real elegance, charm and complexity. With Zinfandel you get what you pay for, and it’s unusual to get a bargain.' Antóin UáRuairc, UK Midland Sommelier

‘If you want to be serious about Zinfandel you have to pay for top quality. The good ones are just below £20 – really great food wines.’ Olivier Gasselin, OenoTrade

Award winners

Found 6 wines

New World: Zinfandel

Dry Creek, Heritage, Zinfandel 2017, Sonoma County, California, USA

Gold medal winner Critics Choice

'Really attractive and appealing, with a soft, gentle nose showing subtle notes of menthol and forest, leading to a rich and elegant palate with gentle tannins and a peppery finish. This is looking for a lightly chargrilled steak with chargrilled vegetables.'
Antóin UáRuairc, UK Midland Sommelier.

'A fine example of Zinfandel that's big and structured, with a fine savoury finish.'
Olivier Gasselin, OenoTrade.

£18.07 Bibendum

Seghesio, Sonoma Zinfandel 2018, Sonoma County, California, USA

Silver medal winner

'This is complex and savoury, with vanilla and toasted notes alongside some cooked fruits like prunes, cherries, strawberries and black plums, leading to a hint of freshness on the finish.'
Elisa Soggia, Trivet.

'Good concentration, with silky tannins, complexity and longevity. It's still young, but drinkable now.'
Martin Lam, team leader.

£19.80 Liberty Wines

Goldstone, Drifting, Old Vine Zinfandel 2016, Lodi, California, USA

Silver medal winner

'A lovely way to be introduced to Zinfandel, with some forward fruit and red flower notes leading to a full-bodied palate with warm yet elegant alcohol, all leading to a herbal green tea finish. I could see this working well in any pub by the glass, or on steakhouse wine lists.'
Laurent Richet MS, team leader.

£9.35 Matthew Clark

Bonterra, Zinfandel, Organic 2016, California, USA

Silver medal winner

'A beautiful style of Zinfandel with spice and tobacco notes leading to a white pepper finish.'
Tanya Mann, consultant.

'Some high acidity is well balanced by the intensity of red fruit here, along with some fresh violet notes, spice and a herbaceous note too.'
Lucie Hammerschmiedova, Portland Restaurant.

£12.66 Enotria&Coe

Precision Wines, Navigator, Zinfandel 2016, Lodi, California, USA

Commended medal winner

£13.45 Top Selection

Precision Wines, Prototype, Zinfandel 2016, Lodi, California, USA

Commended medal winner

£11.55 Top Selection