95% Zinfandel, 5% Petite Sirah
92 Points – Erin Brooks, The Wine Advocate
90 Points – Wine & Spirits
Dry Creek Valley
Ripe raspberry on entry with aromas of currant and clove. Bright, refreshing acidity on the palate with dusty tannins and seductive aromas of lavender and brown spice. MB (7/19)
This is our first release from this small three-acre vineyard planted to the Mazzoni clone of zinfandel from the original Mazzoni Ranch in Geyserville. Perched on the bench land of Dry Creek Valley, the twenty year-old zinfandel vines have small, compact clusters. Seven days of fermentation extracted plentiful color and full, supple tannins. Fourteen months aging in american oak adds spice to the layered briary fruit. Approachable as a young wine, this exemplary zinfandel will develop with a further six to seven years of cellaring.
In 1860, the C.L. Lambert family, settled Lambert Rancho, 5 miles northwest of Healdsburg Square. They built a large and beautiful Gothic Revival house on their new homestead. The arrival of the railroad in 1871 allowed them to flourish, especially due to the high demand from San Francisco. Then in 1919, Prohibition created chaos in the wine industry and instigated a widespread transition from large vineyards to mostly French prunes. Over the years, parts of the ranch were sold off until the late 1990s when the Manoukian family purchased the Gothic Revival house, which had sunken into total disrepair, and the surrounding 4-1/2 acres. By 2000, having labored for 2 years, they christened their new 3-acre zinfandel vineyard’s first harvest. Phil Manoukian diligently farms his zinfandel vines and is restoring the old house to its former glory.
Rainfall: 61.5 inches (above normal)
Weather: A wet winter gave us much-needed rain. Cool weather in the spring affected set across all varieties.
Harvest Dates: 6 September
Grapes: Average Brix 25.3˚
Fermentation: Natural primary and secondary; daily pump-overs; pressed at seven days.
Barrels: 100% air-dried American oak barrels (20% new, 30% one and two years-old, 25% three years-old, and 25% four years-old).
Aging: Fourteen months in barrel
Hand-harvested, sustainably grown grapes; destemmed and crushed; fermented on the native yeasts, followed by a full malolactic on the naturally occurring malolactic bacteria; oak from barrel aging; minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35 ppm at crush and 87 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.
The Wine Advocate: 92 Points “Medium ruby color and bombastic scents of dried rose petals, crushed Bing cherries, pomegranate, licorice and charcuterie with pie spices, mixed berry preserves, exotic spices and loads of earthy accents in the undercurrent. Medium-bodied, intense and spicy, it has a finely grained frame and bright, spicy flavors, finishing long and juicy with some youthful oak poking out.” – Erin Brooks (February 2020)
Wine & Spirits: 90 Points (Best Buy) “This wine’s youthful fruit brings simple flavors of strawberry and raspberry to the fore, boosted by smoky oak scents. The tannins paint it black while the alcohol sweetens the fruit impression and drives the warm finish. Cellar this for a few years, then decant it well before you start up the grill” – J.G. (August 2019)
Average Rating: 89.3
No. of Tasting Notes: 8
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