The history of Orin Swift Cellars dates back to 1995 when, on a lark, David Swift Phinney went to Italy to spend a semester “studying.” During that time, he was introduced to wine, how it was made, and got hooked. A few more years of university led to graduation and eventually a job at Robert Mondavi Winery in 1997 as a temporary harvest worker. He decided that if he was going to work this hard, it would eventually have to be for himself; so in 1998 he founded Orin Swift Cellars ("Orin" is his father’s middle name and "Swift" is his mother’s maiden name). With two tons of Zinfandel and not much else, he spent the next decade making wine for others as well as himself and grew the company into a multinational brand, which now includes 300 acres of vineyards in the Southwest of France. This international ambition has led to projects in Spain, Italy, Corsica, Argentina, and other locations around the globe. Tasting notes on the 2015 vintage from the winery: "The wine opens with a nose brimming of ripe boysenberry and cassis, complemented by hints of cigar box, fir and graphite. Full-bodied on entry, the luscious palate is full of ripe cherry and a touch of blackberry with elegant traces of sage. It closes with a satiating finish that is long and textured, supported by ample red berries and soft, dusty tannins."
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