2003 Russian River Valley "Carlisle Vineyard" Zinfandel
14% Mixed Black Varieties (Petite Sirah, Alicante Bouschet, Grand Noir, Carignane, and others)
Our "Grand Cru" Zinfandel! It's amazing how despite the vagaries of each vintage, this 1927 vineyard continues to produce great wine year in and year out. Picked in late October, yields were a scant .7 ton to the acre. Cold-soaked for 5 days before an indigenous fermentation, the wine was pressed after 23 days on the skins to all French oak, 30% new. Malolactic fermentation did not complete until the following September. Certainly one of the longest malolactic fermentations we've ever experienced but it allowed us to minimize the use of sulfite. Bottled unfiltered.
Dark ruby garnet. Heady, intoxicating aromas of buttered ripe raspberries and briary spice. Smells very deep, thick. On the palate, full-bodied, mouth-coating. Like raspberry concentrate! Impeccable balance with beautiful tannin and acid structure. Combine the fruit and weight of the '01 with the structure of the '02 and you have the '03. This wine will age extremely well. Drink from late 2006 through 2012. (MRO - 8/7/05)