95% Zinfandel, 5% Petite Sirah
95 Points – Zinfandel Chronicles
Russian River Valley
Notes of raspberry, rose petal and Russian River minerality. Soft and supple tannin structure with notes of cherry, graphite and ripe pomegranate with ample acidity and an elegant finish. SR (10/22)
The cooler climate of the Russian River Valley appellation allowed this fruit to ripen slowly and develop both elegance and structure. All three blocks were harvested in late September and fermented separately. The old vine block and the front young vines were selected in blind tasting, giving us a wine of firm acidity and focused fruit. It will be at its best over the next six to seven years. SR (10/22)
Bob Ponzo has farmed these vines in the Russian River Valley for over 40 years. The vineyard, planted on deep gravelly loam soils, is four and a half miles south of Lytton Springs. Here, the Russian River Valley’s cooler microclimate ripens the grapes later than at Lytton Springs and Geyserville. Small amounts of petite sirah are interplanted with zinfandel in the oldest block.
Rainfall: 14 inches (below normal)
Bloom: Early May
Weather: A dry winter and spring stressed the vines, limiting yields and concentrating flavors.
Harvest Date: 12 September
Grapes: Average Brix 26.2˚
TA: 8.55 g/L
Fermentation: Grapes de-stemmed and crushed, pumped over a floating cap.
Barrels: 100% air-dried American oak barrels (9% new, 9% one year old, 10% two years old, and 72% five+ years old).
Aging: Fourteen months in barrel
Hand-harvested, Bob Ponzo vineyard grapes; de-stemmed 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, 56 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.
Zinfandel Chronicles: 95 Points “Magenta in color. Sublime nose of red fruits, peach and anise. Medium body with exquisite acidity. Lush, well balanced and bursting with bright, juicy fruits. Cherries, raspberry liqueur and pepper on the palate. Tremendous length on the finish. My kind of Zinfandel. This embodies everything I love about Russian River Valley Zins. Best over the next 3-4 years.” -Tom Lee (September 2023)
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