Producer: Upper Shirley Vineyards
Region: Virginia
Blend: 46% merlot, 31% petit verdot, 15% malbec, 8% tannat
ABV: 13.3%
Price: $23*

* Review sample provided by the winery

Upper Shirley Vineyards 2014 "Zachariah" Red Wine

86 points

Nice, maturing aromas of black cherry and black plum are a bit overwhelmed by notes of toasty oak, sweet vanilla and smokey bacon.

Medium-bodied and with moderate alcohol (13.3% abv) the palate shows similar dark fruits along with hints of menthol and black pepper spice. But again, there is a lot of oak here, both in terms of flavor (bacon, vanilla, etc.) and its tannins, which are grippy, though softened at the edges.

Given the quality of the other reds in the 2019 Virginia Governor's Cup Case, this one was a bit of a letdown. The oak and winemaking seems more important than regional character or terroir.

About Author

Lenn Thompson, a proud Pittsburgh, PA native, moved to Long Island more than a decade ago and quickly fell in love with the region’s dynamic and emerging wine community. A digital and content marketing and community professional by day, he founded in early 2004 to share his passion for the wines, beers and spirits of New York State. After running that site -- which became the premier source for independent New York wine commentary, reviews and news -- for 12 years, he launched in late 2016 to add the wines of Virginia, Maryland, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Vermont and beyond to his beat. Lenn currently serves as the wine columnist for The Suffolk Times weekly newspaper and is the former editor of the Long Island Wine Gazette. He contributes or has contributed to publications like Wine Enthusiast Magazine, Beverage Media, Edible Brooklyn, Edible East End and Edible Hudson Valley. Lenn served on the board of directors for Drink Local Wine, and is the creator and founder of TasteCamp, an annual regional wine immersion conference for writers and trade. An admitted riesling and cabernet franc fanatic, he’s intensely passionate about eating local and the many local wine regions of America. Lenn lives in Miller Place, NY with his wife Nena, son Jackson, daughter Anna and their dog, Casey Lemieux Thompson.

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