Klinker Brick Winery: Master of Old Vine Zin While Old Vine Zinfandel is what's Klinker Brick is known for, they just released new wines you should try. BY TOURING & TASTING
Photo courtesy of Klinker Brick Winery
The tasting room offers a warm, comfortable environment to enjoy the rich Zinfandels.
“ While there are significant limitations in the quantity of grapes produced, the quality of fruit is exceptional.”
Fifth generation grape growers Steve and Lori Felten are often asked why they gave their winery the unusual name of Klinker Brick. Klinker bricks (named for the unusual sound they make when banged together) grace many of Lodi’s historical buildings. These highly regarded bricks were chosen by 1920s craftsmen architects for their distinctive qualities, including unique shapes and dark, rich color. They are denser and heavier in weight than regular bricks. A rich, deep color, enormous density, and other unique characteristics also help describe the winery’s exceptional lineup of red wines, like the Old Vine Zinfandel and Farrah Syrah.
The Feltens’ vineyards are primarily Old Vine Zinfandel, managed in 17 individual vineyard blocks of vines ranging from 40 to 120 years old. The vines are mostly head trained and some dry farmed, yielding an average of 2.0 to 3.5 tons per acre. Some of the oldest vineyards have yields as small as one quarter ton per acre. While there are significant limitations in the quantity of grapes produced, the quality of fruit is exceptional. These outstanding grapes come from several unique vineyards within the Lodi Appellation. Growing the grapes and making spectacular wines from Old Vine Zinfandel is the Feltens’ passion, and it is their mission to make only the finest Zinfandel from some of the oldest vineyards in the world.
But Zinfandel is not the only varietal that’s making a bang at Klinker Brick Winery. Besides the exotic Farrah Syrah, the winery has added several distinctive new wines, including a dry style Rosé, a captivating, pungent Cabernet blend called Bricks & Mortar, and two first vintages: a dark, inky Petite Sirah, and a refreshingly aromatic Albariño. Sampling all of the wines is a even more delightful when one can visit the beautiful tasting room boasting lofty ceilings, concrete brick walls, and plenty of appealing wine-related gift items.
What to Buy '12 Farrah Syrah - $20
Dark fruit, pepper, plum, chocolate, tobacco, exotic spices
'12 Old Vine Zinfandel - $19
Wild strawberry, Satsuma plum, cedar, black cherry, vanilla
'12 Old Ghost Old Vine Zinfandel - $37
Mocha, brambleberry, exotic spice, dark fruit
Picnic grounds, sustainable farming practices, pet friendly, wine club discounts.