75% Zinfandel, 25% Carignane
95 Points – Owen Bargreen, OwenBargreen.com
93 Points – Wine Spectator
92 Points – Tom Lee, Zinfandel Chronicles
Opulent blackberry and dark chocolate on the nose. Plenty of bramble fruit mingles with brown spice and dusty tannins on the palate. Well-balanced with a clean and elegant finish. MB (2/22)
Late summer heat created stress and limited yields for these dry-farmed vines. By mid- August sugars were rising quickly so we picked non-stop for three days to get all the grapes in before they became over-ripe. An extra adjacent block of carignane was included to bring ripe fruit and acidity into balance. This old vine zinfandel can be enjoyed upon release and over the next five to six years. JO (1/19)
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.
Rainfall: 61.5 inches (above normal)
Weather: Cool weather in April affected set. Several heat spikes in late June, July, and August saw temperatures over 105 degrees.
Harvest Dates: 29 August – 2 September
Grapes: Average Brix 26.8˚
TA: 5.64 g/L
Fermentation: Grapes fermented on the naturally occurring yeasts. Pressed at 8 days. Full malolactic carried out without inoculation.
Barrels: 100% air-dried American oak barrels (20% new, 30% one and two years-old, and 50% three and four years-old).
Aging: Fourteen months in barrel
Hand-harvested; sustainably farmed, estate-grown grapes; destemmed and crushed; fermented on the native yeasts, followed by a full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria; 0.25 g/L tartaric acid added; oak from barrel aging; minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35 ppm at crush, 107 ppm during aging); pad filtered at bottling. In keeping with our philosophy of minimal intervention, this is the sum of our actions.
OwenBargreen.com: 95 Points “A knockout wine to consume now, the 2017 Ridge Vineyards ‘Buchignani Ranch’ Zinfandel has 25% Carignane blended in. The palate is silky and elegant with a seamless mouthfeel. A light dusting of black pepper falls upon layers of allspice dusted charcuterie, cigar ash, and very pretty red fruits. Everything is just marvelously in balance here.” -Owen Bargreen (August 2022)
Wine Spectator: 93 Points “Fresh out of the briar patch, this energetic yet harmonious red is loaded with wild berry, black pepper and bittersweet chocolate flavors that finish with zesty tannins. Drink now through 2030.” -T.F. (May 2023)
Zinfandel Chronicles: 92 Points “Super nose of black fruits, citrus and baking spices. Medium body with just enough acidity. Claret style with savory dark fruits. Black cherry, black raspberry, earth and pepper on the palate. Nice length on the finish. Terrific Zinfandel that over delivers for the vintage. Best over the next 2-4 years.” -Tom Lee (August 2022)
Average Rating: 90.7
No. of Tasting Notes: 34
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