87% Zinfandel, 13% Petite Sirah
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Garnet color. Appealing aromas of red fruit, strawberry-cherry compote, clay minerals, and barrel spice. Ripe bramble fruit on entry, medium-body, elegant tannins, and balanced acidity; long, sensuous finish. EB (11/17)
A wet winter and late spring rains helped alleviate the drought. We base picking on tasting grape samples from each parcel. This year, two passes at harvest optimized ripeness. We crushed the grapes to tanks fitted with grids to submerge the cap for more gentle extraction. This elegant, balanced wine is already showing appealing fruit and will develop further complexity over the next five to six years.
Originally a part of the Rancho Sotoyome Spanish land grant, these one hundred acres were purchased in the mid-1800s by Archibald Carmichael. Ridge began farming the upper half of the ranch in 2000. The soils differ considerably between the upper and lower blocks. The Carmichael comes principally from the west side of the abandoned right of way of the old Northwestern Pacific railroad where soils transition from gravel to clay. This is our twelfth release from the ranch.
Rainfall: 33.2 inches (just below normal)
Weather: Very wet December, followed by the driest January on record (0.05”). Cool, wet late spring helped with rainfall totals, but reduced our crop across all varieties. Harvest started early and finished quickly.
Harvest Dates: 3 – 15 September
Grapes: Average Brix 24.1˚
Fermentation: Seven day fermentation in small fermentors; natural primary and secondary fermentation.
Barrels: 100% air-dried american oak: (15% new, 34% two-years-old and 51% four-years-old).
Aging: 15 months in barrel
All Estate grown grapes, hand harvested; destemmed and crushed; fermented on the native yeasts, followed by full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria; 6.0 g/L tartaric acid added; minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35 ppm at crush, 115 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: 90.4
No. of Tasting Notes: 59
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