89% Primitivo, 6% Petite Sirah, 5% Carignane
Dry Creek Valley
In 2004, we replanted a five-acre block on Lytton West to primitivo, the Italian name for a grape brought from Croatia to southern Italy in the late eighteenth century. This is the same grape that came from Croatia to America, via Vienna, in the 1820s as zinfandel. The grapes were hand harvested on September 21 at ideal ripeness, and fermented on the native yeasts for ten days, until dry. After a natural malolactic, the wine was racked to air-dried american oak barrels for thirteen months of aging. Rich, rustic, yet balanced, it is delicious now, and will be at its best over the next five to seven years.
In 1972, Ridge made its first Lytton Springs from vines planted here at the turn of the century. We purchased both the eastern and western portions of the vineyard in the early 1990s. (In the 1870s, under “Captain” William Litton’s ownership, the two were part of one property; spelling evolved into “Lytton” by 1903). This is the second time we have bottled as a separate wine our only block planted to a primitivo clone of zinfandel from the Puglia region of southern Italy.
Rainfall: Forty inches (above average)
Weather: Wet spring and atypically cool summer, with no sustained heat spells.
Harvest: 21 September
Grapes: Average brix 24.5˚
Fermentation: Natural primary and secondary fermentations. Pressed at ten days.
Barrels: 100% air-dried american oak barrels (20% new, 45% one year and two years old, 35% three to four years old).
Aging: Thirteen months in barrel
Hand harvested, estate-grown grapes; destemmed and crushed; fermented on the native yeasts, followed by full malolactic on naturally-occurring bacteria; 1.39 grams/liter tartaric acid; minimum effective sulfur (35 ppm at crush, 140 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.
Average Rating: 89.4
No. of Tasting Notes: 33
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