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When Simplicity Can Be a Winemaking Virtue

In the widely popular monthly column, Wine School, produced by Eric Asimov of the New York Times, the topic of the consumer’s aversion to “sweet wines” tackled. Asimov explains that, “wine trade observers for years have remarked on this chasm between what American consumers say they want in a wine and what they actually choose to drink.” This statement reflects that most consumers are driven crazy by sweetness in wine, but these same consumers consistently purchase wines such as Apiothic Red and The Prisoner, which all have discernible sweetness. 

For this lesson, Asimov suggested trying three wines that are made with simpler production techniques, including the Marietta Cellars Old Vine Red. These wines, in comparison to the more processed wines, were mostly dry with only a little detectable sweetness remaining in the wine after fermentation. 

The Marietta Old Vine Red is described as “a wine blended with a number of different grapes from multiple appellations, is quite different. It tastes a little of red fruits, a little of licorice and a little of root beer. Yet it’s not sweet. It’s medium-bodied, not too big or alcoholic, just a decent drink of wine, with character and personality.

To learn more about sweetness and Marietta Cellars, read the full lesson HERE.


Related Wines

    Marietta Cellars

    Marietta Cellars Old Vine Red

    Sonoma/Mendocino, California, United States

    Affectionately known as "OVR," Marietta's Old Vine Red is a proprietary red wine made to replicate the field blends of the old vineyards in Sonoma and Mendocino counties. A groundbreaking combination of grape varieties and multiple vintages first produced in 1982, this wine has blazed the path for red blends for decades. With an historic underground following, it is one of the longest lasting and best known red blends produced today. Predominantly comprised of Zinfandel, Old Vine Red combines pure fruit, a supple mouth feel and a rich, solid structure.

Related Producers

    Marietta Cellars

    Sonoma & Mendocino, California

    Starting with only a handful of purchased grapes in 1978, Marietta Cellars has been a standout winery in Sonoma and Mendocino since the very start. Founded by Chris Bilbro, a Sonoma native with winemaking roots dated 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.