Sunday, February 14, 2010

Klinker Brick Winery - Five generations of grape growing, 110 year old vines

Like many Lodi wineries, Klinker Brick owners Steve and Lori Felten come from a long line of growers who decided to take that next step and produce their own wine. They are fifth generation farmers, with ancestors from Germany and Russia who first settled in Lodi to produce watermelon. The family recognized the capability of the area to grow grapes and began to plant Zinfandel, Carignan and Alicante. With this extensive experience and love for Zinfandel grapes in Lodi, Steve and Lori began their own winery, with the goal to produce exceptional Zinfandel, culling the best lots for their wine.

The name Klinker Brick is in respect to the highly prized Klinker bricks that are used in many historic buildings in Lodi. These bricks are heavier than normal bricks with rich color, unique shapes and when you bang them together, you hear a “klink”! Steve and Lori felt the same deep color, heavy density, distinctiveness and quality is reflected in their Zinfandel.

Klinker Brick grapes are grown in deep sandy rich soil Lodi. The sandy loam is 35 feet deep or more. All four vineyards are dry farmed. Lodi’s long growing season helps the grapes achieve 27 Brix at harvest resulting in alcohol levels of approximately 16%.

The 2007 Klinker Brick Old Vine Zinfandel is produced with grapes from vines that are 57 to 113 years old. The aroma is bursting with dried fruit, raspberry, blackberry and pepper. These same rich flavors carry forth on the palate leading to a warm, long finish.

Klinker Brick 2007 Old Ghost Zinfandel is a very special wine coming from a 96 year old vineyard specially selected with very small yields but tons of flavors. This is an elegant, yet powerful wine for those who truly love a big Zin. As the Californian varietal, this Zin is a great American wine and is aged in American oak. This wine is full of intense dark fruit flavors, jammy texture and spice displaying brawn and elegance.

Klinker Brick winery added a Lodi Syrah to their wine portfolio in 2001. The 2007 Lodi Farrah Syrah has a dark garnet color with aromas of raspberry and cherry and a touch of tobacco and mint. Flavors include cherry, raspberry, chocolate and tobacco with an earthiness quality and the spices and pepper flavors you expect from a fine Syrah.

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