92 Points | North Coast Wine Competition | April 2021
This briary Old Vine Zinfandel displays aromas of wild blackberry and sasparilla. A soft mouthfeel of dark chocolate balances with minty notes introduced by the Eucalyptus groves bordering the vineyard. The rich middle palate transitions to a long herbaceous finish reminiscent of black tea and muddled berries.
2018 provided an ideal climate allowing time for the grapes to ripen to their optimum flavor structure. The year presented a fairly mild growing season with few heat spikes, inspiring winemakers to push harvest back a few weeks. This longer time on the vine was great for grapes and the mild temperatures kept the fruit from over-ripening. More than an inch of rain fell in early October in many locations, but there was little impact on the quality of the fruit. 2018 could be remembered as one of the longest and most desirable seasons in years, producing exceptional quality grapes throughout Sonoma County.
This vineyard is picked & fermented by its two distinct blocks: the House Block which has smaller yields & more mixed varieties producing a dark dense wine. The other block, known as the Hill Block, is almost exclusively Zinfandel & makes a wine much brighter in fruit and spicier aromatics.
The grapes undergo a five-day cold soak before fermentation to extract optimal color and aroma. After primary fermentation, the wine is pumped into French oak barrels, 20% new, where it undergoes natural malolactic fermentation, followed by 15 months of aging.