From Mendocino-sourced zinfandels to Napa Valley cabernets, there's a glass (or bottle) for everyone's taste at Jack London Square, where eight wineries are packed into a less-than-square-mile tasting walk we can get behind.
Dashe Cellars: Zinfandels Rule the Roost
On 4th Street, 40-year-old Dashe Cellars, owned by Michael and Anne Dashe, specializes in single-varietal zinfandels. We recommend a glass of the 2015 Mcfadden Farm zin (known for strong pomegranate and berry aromas) from Mendocino's Potter Valley. // 55 4th St. (Jack London Square, Oakland), dashecellars.com
Urban Legend(Photo courtesy of Mercury News)
Urban Legends: A Wine to Make You Blush
At the intersection of 2nd and Jackson Streets, Urban Legend is handcrafting more than a dozen in-house wines, each with its own uniquely Californian nuances. Founded by Marilee and Steve Shaffer, a former biologist and an engineer respectively, the utilitarian space is primed for tasting something different. We recommend the 2016 Rosato Di Barbera—a crisp, dry rosé with hints of white peach and fresh-picked strawberries. // 200 2nd St., Suite 1 (Jack London Square, Oakland), ulcellars.com
Campovida's Jack London Square tasting room(Courtesy of squarespace.com)
Campovida: Go for a Bit of Sparkle
Actually based in Hopland, Campovida's Linden Street communal tasting table is a welcoming spot for East Bay wine lovers. Here they pour sustainable, single-sourced vintages from Mendocino and take pride in reasonable prices. We suggest trying Campovida's first foray into sparkling wine, an iteration of a cuvée brut with a signature bronze hue. // 95 Linden St. (Jack London Square, Oakland), campovida.com
(Courtesy of Rosenblum)
Rosenblum Cellars: Kingly Zins
Rosenblum has been featuring the wines from its smaller-scale, family-owned vineyards (rather than its larger, estate-sourced wines) at Jack London Square for nearly 40 years. Sometimes called the king of zin, Kent Rosenblum's zinfandels are top-notch. But do look out for the Rose 'N' Blum Moscato, a dessert wine creamy undertones of ripe apricot and aromatic jasmine. // 10 Clay St, (Jack London Square, Oakland), rosenblumcellars.com
(Courtesy of wixstatic.com)
Cerruti Cellars: A Legendary Cab
At Cerruti Cellars, the Legacy Series wines are allowed to aerate for an hour or so before pouring, and there are usually at least a couple to choose from. May we suggest the 2011 Tudal Winery Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, a drinker of complex yet smooth notes of dark chocolate and red cherry. // 100 Webster St. (Jack London Square, Oakland), cerruticellars.com
(Courtesy of Jeff Cohn Cellars)
Jeff Cohn Cellars: A Taste of France
On Franklin Street, Jeff Cohn Cellars is uncorking its namesake Rhône-inspired reds—a variety you'll be hard-pressed to come across anywhere else on this tour. Taste the 2013 Broken Compass, with nuances of black cherry and raspberry, and the 2014 El Diablo Grenache, which has undertones of lavender and honey. // 160 Franklin St (Jack London Square, Oakland), jeffcohncellars.com
Brooklyn West Winery: "No Vineyards, No Limits"
At the corner of 3rd and Jackson Streets, Brooklyn West is a boundary-breaker, preferring to open-source grapes from all of over California in order to curate exquisite wines from some of the state's best groves. Their 2012 Aria Late Harvest has has the mouthwatering nostalgia of butterscotch candy. // 201 3rd St, (Jack London Square, Oakland), brooklynwestwinery.com.
Minimo: Keep It Simple
Quite possibly the most charming tasting room in Jack London Square, Minimo (Italian for "minimal") is a humble neighborhood wine shop where the walls are decorated with bottles of well-aged wines and lined with communal seating. Revered for its sweet notes, the sparkling Malvasia Bianca will leave your taste buds refreshed with its subtle nudges of peach and white currants. // 420 3rd St (Jack London Square, Oakland), minimowine.com