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. The winery has slowly expanded its estate holdings over the past thirty years, evolving into a beacon for high-quality, balanced Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, and Rhône variety blends. Now fully estate-based and organically farmed, Marietta has vineyards spanning 310 acres in the Alexander Valley, McDowell Valley, and Yorkville Highlands. Notable among their heritage plantings are California’s oldest Syrah blocks, planted in the late 1800s.
Released only earlier this year, Lot 74 is a multi-vintage wine from the 2021, 2020, and 2019 vintages. Not to impart an overly oaky flavor, aging is done in 60% aged in neutral barrels and 40% aged in stainless steel.
Old Vine Red is a proprietary red wine made to replicate the field blends of many of the old vineyards in Sonoma and Mendocino counties. Predominantly comprised of Zinfandel, Old Vine Red combines pure fruit, a supple mouth feel, and a rich, solid structure. First produced in 1982, this groundbreaking combination of multiple varietals and multiple vintages has blazed the path for red blends for decades. With a national following, it is one of the longest-lasting and best-known red blends produced today.
The glass opens with a lovely bright plum fruit. Dark and focused with notes of briar patch and black tea, this wine strikes a perfect balance between fruit-forward and layered depth. It is medium-bodied, with a mouth of sweet spice, velvety tannins, and electric vibrancy.
Pair this with a wide range of bolder foods such as pizza, pasta, burgers, roasted vegetables, mushrooms, and even tacos.