72% Zinfandel, 15% Petite Sirah, 9% Carignane, 2% Alicante Bouschet, 1% Cinsaut, 1% Counoise
95+ Points – Antonio Galloni, Vinous
94 Points – Zinfandel Chronicles
93 Points – Owen Bargreen, OwenBargreen.com
Dry Creek Valley
Nose of red and black raspberry, white pepper, fennel, sage, dark chocolate and sarsaparilla. Full bodied with notes of blackberry and ripe plum; juicy acidity, excellent midpalate weight and a lengthy finish. SR (11/22)
A dry winter left the vines struggling to find water. This reduced fruit set in all varietals, especially zinfandel. Thirty-eight parcels were harvested from September first to October fifth and fermented separately. Thirty-four were selected, including vines planted in 1901 and eighty-year-old counoise inter-planted with cinsaut. Enjoyable now, this beautiful, complex wine will continue to develop over the next ten years and beyond. SR (11/22)
In 1972, Ridge made its first Lytton Springs from vines planted on the eastern half of the vineyard at the turn of the century. Both the eastern and western portions of the vineyard were purchased in the early 1990s, (In the 1870s, under “Captain” William Litton’s ownership, the two were part of one property; spelling evolved to “Lytton” by 1903.) The vineyard is planted to zinfandel and its principal complementary varietals.
Rainfall: 14 inches (below normal)
Bloom: Early May
Weather: A dry winter and spring stressed the vines, limiting yields and concentrating flavors.
Harvest Dates: 1 September – 5 October
Grapes: Average Brix 24.7˚
TA: 5.90 g/L
Fermentation: Full crush; 100 natural primary and secondary.
Barrels: 100% air-dried American oak barrels (17% new, 3% one year old, 10% two years old, 10% there years old and 65% three and four years old).
Aging: Sixteen months in barrel
Hand-harvested, organically grown, estate grapes; destemmed and crushed; fermented on the native yeasts, followed by full malolactic on the naturally occurring bacteria; oak from barrel aging; minimum effective sulfur for this wine (35 ppm at crush, 65.3 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.
Vinous: 95+ Points “The 2021 Lytton Springs is fabulous. Bright and vibrant to its core, the 2021 impresses with its poise. Readers will find a Lytton Springs that is very much in reserve, as opposed to the rest of the 2021s in this report, all of which are more approachable. Salivating acids and veins of tannin lend shape and persistence, but the 2021 needs time. Red cherry fruit, blood orange, rose petal and sage are some of the notes that linger on the close.” -Antonio Galloni (October 2023)
Zinfandel Chronicles: 94 Points “Crimson in color. Heady nose of red and black fruits, licorice and flowers. Medium to full bodied with strong acidity. Power and concentration in spades. Blackberry, crushed raspberries and charred meat on the palate. The finish is long with prominent, gritty tannins. This will be a long lived Lytton Springs. Give this a few years in the cellar and drink over the next decade. ” -Tom Lee (September 2023)
OwenBargreen.com: 93 Points “A standout value, the 2021 Ridge Vineyards ‘Lytton Springs’ Red Wine combines 72% Zinfandel with 15% Petite Sirah, 9% Carignane, and very small parts Alicante Bouschet, Cinsaut, and Counoise. Once on the nose this exudes class with its high-toned red rose petal tones alongside red licorice, ripe strawberry and bramble notes. The palate is soft and refined with soft tannins that greet you alongside an electric core of red fruit flavors, with pink bubblegum, coffee grounds and shades of cardamom spice. Really good now, this will easily go from another eight years to come. Drink 2023-2033.” -Owen Bargreen (October 2023)
Average Rating: 92.6
No. of Tasting Notes: 8
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