Dry Creek Valley
Dark crimson red. Opulent aroma of briar fruits, savory spice, clay/mineral earth. Red and black mixed cherry fruits on entry, bright acidity, medium-full body, chalky tannins, tart plum finish.
Planted entirely to zinfandel, this twelve-year-old vineyard on the Dry Creek Bench set a small crop in 2010. Three days of extreme heat in late August sunburned clusters, further reducing the crop and resulting in the most concentrated wine we have yet produced from this site. The seven vineyard blocks were harvested and fermented separately. After natural secondary fermentation, six of the seven were selected for the final wine, then aged for thirteen months in air-dried american oak barrels. This full bodied zinfandel can be enjoyed now, but will benefit from five to six years of bottle age. JO (1/11)
Ridge has made the East Bench as a single-site zinfandel since 2006. One of our few single-variety wines, this zinfandel vineyard sits high on top of the bench land that overlooks Dry Creek Valley from the east.
Rainfall: 42 inches (above average)
Bloom: Late May
Weather: Dry winter saved by spring rains followed by a warm, dry summer.
Harvest Dates: 11 September – 1 October
Grapes: Average Brix 26.2
Fermentation: Natural primary and secondary; twice daily pump-overs; pressed at ten days.
Barrels: 100% air-dried american oak barrels (20% new, 25% one and two years old, 45% three, four and five years old).
Aging: Thirteen months
All estate-grown grapes, hand harvested. Destemmed and crushed. Fermented on the native yeasts, followed by full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria. 0.20 grams/liter tartaric acid added during fermentation. Minimum effective sulfur 35 ppm at crush, (180 ppm over the course of aging). Pad filtered at bottling. In keeping with our philosophy of minimal intervention, this is the sum of our actions.
Quarterly Review of Wines (Autumn 2012) : 28th Best of The Best California Zinfandel – “Crimson red, lots of spice, with rich raspberry and cherry flavors. A generous wines with gripping spice and earthiness, with complex plum and cherry finish. Beautiful balance.” (Rated: 95 pts., Best of Show)
Wine & Spirits Magazine: Top of the List (23rd Annual Restaurant Poll)
Average Rating: 90.6
No. of Tasting Notes: 82
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