2009 Russian River Valley "Martinelli Road Vineyard" Zinfandel
Holy cannolis Batman! We were so excited by this wine during élevage that we could hardly wait to get it into bottle. Planted in the 1880s by the Banfield family, the vineyard was sold to Giuseppe Martinelli in 1903. In 1934, the vineyard was divided amongst Giuseppe’s three sons, Leno, Domingo, and Fred. Domingo’s portion was passed on to his son and daughter, Joe and Emily, and has been bottled under a variety of names, including Martinelli Road Vineyard. Up until last year, Joe, now 85 years old, farmed the vines just as his father and grandfather did before him. This is truly one of the great old-vine vineyards of Russian River Valley. Indigenous fermentation. All French oak, 28% new. History in a bottle!
Medium-dark ruby-garnet. Exotic, perfumed aromas of red berries, potpourri, red licorice whips, and spice. One of the most captivating, complex Zinfandels I have ever had the pleasure of smelling! Dense and full-bodied on entry, a cornucopia of fruits (red berries, figs, stone fruits) explode on the palate. Completely dry but with fruit and glycerin nearly obscuring the brisk acidity. A magnificent wine of great symmetry and balance. Optimum drinking should be from release through 2016 (but it may age and develop even longer). (MRO – 3/15/11)