2009 Geyserville

2009 Geyserville

Wine Information

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74% Zinfandel, 17% Carignane, 6% Petite Sirah, 2% Alicante Bouschet, 1% Mataro (Mourvedre)

*Due to limited quantities, purchases subject to a 6 bottle limit

Vintage

2009

Vineyard

Geyserville

Appellation

Alexander Valley

Alcohol By Volume

14.3%

Winemaker Tasting Notes

Saturated ruby color. Penetrating cherry/plum fruit, black tea, pepper/clove spice, gravel, tar, mint. Fresh bramble entry, polished tannins. Opulent, balanced, complete. -Eric Baugher (2/11)

Vintage Notes

Fresh estate grown grapes, hand harvested. Fermented on the naturally-occurring native yeasts, followed by a full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria. No inoculation. No additives of any kind other than 41 mg/liter (3,500 grams total) calcium carbonate to three small fermentors to moderate unusually firm acidity; 25/100 of one percent rehydration (added to three particularly ripe young vine parcels); minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35 parts per million at crush; 105 ppm over the course of aging). No processing whatever other than destemming, crushing and, at bottling, pad filtration.

History

Ridge has made the Geyserville as a single-site zinfandel in every year since 1966. The grapes are grown in three adjoining vineyards on a defined stretch of gravelly soil approximately one-and-a-quarter miles long and a half-mile wide.

Growing Season

Rainfall: 34 inches (below average)
Bloom: Late May
Weather: Dry winter with spring rains and typical warm, dry summer.

Winemaking

Harvest Dates: 11 September – 7 October
Grapes: Average Brix 24.6
Fermentation: Natural primary and secondary; limited use of submerged cap, limited pump-overs. Pressed at six days.
Barrels: 100% air-dried american oak barrels (20% new, 47% one and two years old, 33% three to four years old.)
Aging: Fifteen months in barrel

Fresh estate grown grapes, hand harvested. Fermented on the naturally-occurring native yeasts, followed by a full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria. No inoculation. No additives of any kind other than 41 mg/liter (3,500 grams total) calcium carbonate to three small fermentors to moderate unusually firm acidity; 25/100 of one percent rehydration (added to three particularly ripe young vine parcels); minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35 parts per million at crush; 105 ppm over the course of aging). No processing whatever other than destemming, crushing and, at bottling, pad filtration.

Press

Wine Advocate (Issue 196, August 2011): “The 2009 Geyserville is a gorgeous wine. It shows expressive inner perfume, sweet black cherries, menthol and minerals. This is an understated, exceptionally elegant red endowed with considerable finesse and fabulous overall balance. A round, sensual finish makes it impossible to resist a second taste. In 2009 the blend is 74% Zinfandel, 17% Carignane, 6% Petite Sirah, 2% Alicante Bouschet and 1% Mourvedre. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2029.

I tasted a breathtaking array of wines during my recent visit with Paul Draper at Ridge. Draper is a true American icon, so it’s great to see him doing well after a bout with illness. I also tasted a number of older wines, including several Monte Bellos going back to the 1970s. Heretical as it may sound, I think the wines Draper is making today will prove to be far superior to the wines of decades past, many of which are rightly considered legendary. For ease of reference I have also included notes on all of the Ridge wines made outside the Santa Cruz Mountains. The Chardonnays are fermented with native yeasts and go into barrel with their gross lees, which are stirred once a week. The malos usually start the following spring. The wines are assembled just before the following harvest and go back into neutral oak. Aging is about 15 months for the Estate and 17 months for the Chardonnay Monte Bello, with a maximum of 25% new barrels. The reds are fermented with ambient yeasts, undergo malolactic fermentation in tank (except for the Monte Bello which is mostly done in barrel) and stay on their gross lees until the following spring.” -Antonio Galloni, (Rated: 94)

Guide Connoisseurs’ Guide (September 2011): “Ridge Geyserville bottlings are often among the more complex and well-balanced Zins to be had, and this young, firmly built opus reminds of claret in terms of its structure. It is moderately fruity if still a little tight and constrained back its finishing acids, and it has the depth to relax, expand and improve for five or more years.” Rated: 90 (*)

California Grapevine (Vol. 37, No. 3, June-July 2011): “Medium to medium-dark ruby; attractive, intense, briary, peppery, blackberry and black cherry fruit aroma with hints of black tea and smoked meat; full body; rich, textured, blackberry fruit flavors; medium-full to full tannin; a bit tight and drying on the finish; lingering aftertaste. While very appealing, this rather rustic, Zinfandel-based blend red wine displays less distinctive Zinfandel personality than the other Ridge bottlings in this tasting. Highly recommended.” (Group Score: 15.9, 0/0/1; My Score: 16.5 [89/100], seventh place)

DailyGrape.com (April 2011 newsletter) – “Extremely aromatic with light strawberry and focused dark chocolate notes. On the palate, there’s black tea, licorice and an herbaceous side which matches up nicely with the plum and black currant coming through. Medium to full bodied in structure, it has a really, really nice midpalate where the flavors come together and hold hands, Kumbaya style, and then finishes with a slight oak meets western medicine forest-blend. I like the medium-bodied weight of this wine, which isn’t too full or ripe. Great overall structure and approach, which makes me think this would be a very food friendly wine, especially going into the summer months where we all barbecue on the back deck so much.” -Gary Vaynerchuk (Score: 90 points)

Vinography.com (19 February 2011)- California’s Best Zinfandel: Notes from the ZAP 2011 Tasting – “Medium garnet in color, this wine has an incredibly beautiful nose of bright crushed blackberry, mulberry, and blueberry fruit. Aromas. In the mouth it all but explodes with bright juicy blackberry and blueberry fruit, knit together with fine grained, smooth tannins against a darker backdrop of wet earth. Exceptionally smooth and silky, and conveying a cool, almost polished metal quality, this is the best this wine has ever tasted to me. ” -Alder Yarrow (Score: 9.5-10 points) Read full blog entry at Vinography.com

Consumer Tasting Notes

Average Rating: 91.2

No. of Tasting Notes: 548

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