Deep ruby color, nose of red cherry, plum and vanilla. Full bodied with raspberry, cassis fruit, well-integrated tannins and a lingering finish with mineral and chaparral notes. JO (3/18)
A second dry winter brought early budbreak for the seventy-year-old vines on Buchignani Ranch. The grapes were crushed to small tanks—half of them fitted with grids to hold the skins submerged. Fermentations finished in eleven days. After uninoculated malolactic, we chose Top and House blocks for their focused fruit, integrated tannins, and lively acid. In barrel, the wine was racked off its lees quarterly to clarify naturally. This elegant, spicy zinfandel, enjoyable now, will be at its best over the next five to six years.
This wine comes from a small planting of old-vine zinfandel on the Buchignani Ranch on Dutcher Creek Road in the hills north of Dry Creek Valley. (Carignane planted on the rest of the ranch provides a separate ATP selection.) The zinfandel block, approximately five acres in size, was planted in the 1940s and ’50s on a rocky knoll overlooking the family home where Stan Buchignani, grandson of the ranch’s founder, Domenico Cerruti, lives today.
Rainfall: 24.5 inches (below average)
Bloom: Early to Mid-May
Weather: Warm spring and early summer followed by a moderate summer.
Harvest Date: 10 September and 16 September
Grapes: Average brix 26˚
Fermentation: Grapes fermented on the naturally-occurring yeasts. Pressed at 11 days. Full malolactic carried out without inoculation.
Barrels: Air-dried american oak barrels (25% new, 40% one to two years old, 35% three to four years old).
Aging:Twelve months in barrel
Hand-harvested; sustainably farmed grapes; destemmed and crushed; fermented on the native yeasts, followed by a full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria; 0.5 g/L tartaric acid added; oak from barrel aging; minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35 ppm at crush, 211 ppm during aging); pad filtered at bottling. In keeping with our philosophy of minimal intervention, this is the sum of our actions.
Average Rating: 91.3
No. of Tasting Notes: 55
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