Initial Sugar at Harvest: 31.5% by weight
Residual Sugar in the Wine: 2.6% by weight
Dry Creek Valley
In the days leading up to harvest 2003 at Lytton Springs, the zinfandel ripened at an unprecedented pace. During the second week of September, sugars in some blocks jumped as much as two brix a day. The west-facing young vines on Lytton West’s bench over-ripened—literally—overnight. We harvested them on September 14; initial brix readings were as high as 31.5°. Clearly, these grapes were meant for a Late Harvest. Fermentation (on the natural yeasts) began after forty-eight hours in tank; color and tannin were extracted quickly, and the wine developed an intense viscosity. Juice was gently pumped over the cap of skins for seven days before pressing. (All press wine was included in the final blend.) Aging took place in air-dried american oak, twenty percent of which was new. Toast and vanilla from the oak complement concentrated black fruit. This is a rich, balanced zinfandel of immense proportions. It will need two to three years to integrate fully, and will age well over the next ten years. PD/JO (7/04)
In 1972, Ridge made its first Lytton Springs from vines planted in 1902 on the eastern hills, purchasing the vineyard in 1991. In the early to mid-90’s, we made a series of intense Lytton Estate Zinfandels from these old vines. In 2003, with an exceptionally small crop and very full ripeness we held out several parcels to make a Lytton East.
Average Rating: 89.5
No. of Tasting Notes: 39
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