I'd heard some good things about Seven Deadly Zins so when I saw it for ten bucks (normally between $11.00-$15.00 US) I snagged a bottle to try.
As you would suspect, the labeling is a clever word play on the Seven Deadly Sins, which are the mortal sins and not really a separate genre. It's a Catholic thing.
As long time readers know, one of TWC's cardinal rules is that the quality of the wine is inversely proportional to the cutesy factor of the label. There are varying degrees of application and there are exceptions, but it is a rule that continues to provide valuable guidance.
Seven Deadly Zins is Lodi wine. Yes, Lodi grows vast quantities of varietals. In fact, Lodi grows more Cabernet Sauvignon than Napa Valley. Yes, Lodi sometimes gets a bad rap, but often enough there is little of notable distinction in the land of Gallo. I was trying to see how I could make that into the land of Gallo-Lee and either go with the Jesus reference or Puff the Magic Dragon. Neither one seemed to grow on me, so let's move on.
Seven Deadly Zins is an amalgamation of the offerings of many individual growers who are not identified. Seven growers, to be precise. The vintners, Michael & David Phillips were brought up Catholic, so the label, apparently, took care of itself.
Aged completely in American oak, it is loaded with berry fruit, pepper, spice, and earth characteristics. A rich, full-bodied, opulent, luscious Zinfandel.
The wine is a decent red wine and a lot of people will enjoy it casually at a party or with friends. It does not, however, exhibit any of the characteristics of Zinfandel. No spice. No earth. No berry fruit. And, it certainly is not opulent. It is a drinkable red table wine, arguably worth the ten dollars I paid for it.
It tastes of cherries, but not the semi-sweet cloying cherry that is part and parcel to cheap Cabernets, world wide. It is aged in American oak. Apparently for the half life of U-235. This wine is way over oaked, resulting in a strong vanilla-like flavor that dominates the wine. Not even the Rabbit aerator could resolve this problem. TWC has a sensitive palate and too much oak just flat turns me off.
Comparably priced Cline Cellars Zinfandel might be a better option. Had some 2005 the other night that was quite tasty.