2008 Dolcetto Alegría Vineyards
Gold Medal - 2011 Critics' Challenge Wine Competition
Gold Medal - 2011 California State Fair Wine Competition
Subtle aromas of dusty cherry, earth notes, and clove appear when the wine is first opened, then vanilla, coffee, and a ripe berry essence join in as the wine breathes. Alluring Italianate flavors of lightly spiced plum, earthiness, and vibrant cherry are bathed in a bright acidity. The creamy texture and hints of blueberry and orange peel are revealed toward the finish.
Although Dolcetto means “sweetie”, it produces a delicious dry red wine. Dolcetto was a rare grape in California when we planted our vines 20 years ago. The variety thrives in our cool Russian River climate, and we are able to consistently produce wines that fully express its varietal character.
In 2008 we picked all of our Dolcetto on one day along with the Freisa and Barbera we have inter-planted with the Dolcetto. We fermented the grapes in four ¾-ton fermenters, allowing native yeasts to get started before adding three different cultured yeasts (Syrah, CSM, and 254). The different yeasts highlighted different characteristics (fruitiness, color, and mouthfeel). These differences were apparent in the finished wine, and when they were combined, we found the whole was better than the sum of its parts.
The cool 2008 growing season produced a wine with more structure than some of our previous vintages. With additional bottle aging, the flavors will further integrate and tannins soften. To fully enjoy the wine now, decant an hour before serving to enhance the tasting experience.
October 2, 2008
Brix at Harvest:
Aged for 17 months in 48% French, 24% American, and 28% Hungarian oak barrels; 33% new oak
March 30, 2010