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California family’s zinfandel is stellar

California family’s zinfandel is stellar

Call me a romantic but I have a weakness for old-vine zinfandels. I am not sure if it is the humble respect for the twisted, awkward growing vines or the diligent mission in proving this grape’s finest incarnations are not sweet and pink.

I recently tasted a zinfandel from H. Mynors, that was one of those finest incarnations of the amazing zinfandel grape.

If you are a regular Uncorked reader, you are probably familiar with the wines of Sean Minor, because I continue to be a fan of this family winery. H. Mynors is a brand made by Sean Minor Wines. It’s a reference to Sean Minor’s ninth great-grandfather, who encouraged his family to venture to the new world from England in the early 1600s. The original spelling of their last name was changed to Minor after arriving in America. The timing was around the same as the establishment of Vinifera grapevines being used for wine production on the West Coast.

Zinfandel showed up in U.S. vineyards around 1850. By the 1880s it was the most extensively planted red grape in California. It was not until French grape varieties such as chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon took to the soils of America in the early 1960s that zinfandel plantings started to dwindle. These new grapes flourished in America’s soil and the timing was ideal, as the American wine-drinking market continued to grow. To keep up with demand, many growers grubbed up the zinfandel vines and planted the newcomers.

If not for the loyal producers of zinfandel dedicated to the future of this grape, we may not have the vigor of the zinfandel today. Zinfandel is the third leading wine grape variety in California.

The grapes used for H. Mynors Zinfandel are a combination of fruit grown in Sonoma, Amador and Lodi counties. All three of these areas are world renowned for growing exceptional zinfandels, some of the most acclaimed in the world. The H. Mynors zinfandel showcases the differences in cultivation, terroir and winemaking that combine to give zinfandel its distinct flavor profile, a truly distinct name, ties to the Mynors’ family history and exceptional style.


  • 2014 Sean Minor Four Bears Winery Pinot Noir, California (about $14 retail)


  • 2013 H. Mynors Old Vine Cuvee Zinfandel, California (about $19 retail)