The zinfandel on this Paso Robles ranch was planted
in 1923. It was purchased soon after by Sylvester and
Catarina Dusi, who raised three sons there—Guido,
Dante, and Benito. When Guido and Dante went to
war in 1944, vineyard cultivation was left to
Sylvester and young Benito—eleven years old at the
time. Beni, as his many friends call him, maintained
the vines from then on. Ridge's long relationship with
Beni and the Dusi vineyard began when Dave
Bennion—scouting the area in 1967—knocked on the
Dusis' door and asked to buy five tons of grapes.
Harvest Dates: 7 - 12 September
Grapes: Average brix 26.0 degrees
Fermentation: 100% submerged cap fermentation. Pressed at seven days.
Barrels: Air-dried american oak, 25% new, 43% three years old, and 32% five years old.
Aging: Twelve months
Rainfall: 12 inches (below average)
Bloom: Early May
Weather: Almost ideal conditions, dry summer and fall
Benito Dusi Vineyard grapes, hand harvested; destemmed and crushed;
fermented on the native yeasts, followed by full malolactic on the naturally
occurring bacteria; minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35ppm at crush, 117 ppm over the course of aging);
oak from barrel aging; pad filtered at bottling. In keeping with our philosophy of minimal intervention,
this is the sum of our actions.
Winemaker Tasting Notes
Medium garnet; penetrating bramble fruit, compote, dried fig,
toasted oak, gravelly earth; on entry medium body, sundried cherries,
sour plum, warm baking spices, lively acid, long warm aftertaste.