2008 Zinfandel Heritage Vines™ Alegría Vineyards
Gold Medal - 2010 Grand Harvest Awards Wine Competition
Gold Medal - 2011 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition
Tempting aromas of juicy berry pie, spicy pepper, and vanillin oak lead to this wine’s smooth, plush entry. Lavish flavors—deep blackberry, ripe plum, and rich dark chocolate with threads of raspberry, coffee, and black pepper woven in—satisfy with the first sip through the long finish.
This complex wine comes from our old vineyard planted in the 19th Century as a “field blend” —a unique mix of Zinfandel inter-planted with complementary varieties. We continue a 120-year tradition by harvesting and co-fermenting the mixed varieties together. 2008 was our 19th harvest from these historic grapevines.
The year started with an unusually dry winter and early spring, so the vines started growing early, only to be hit by a rare late frost at the end of April that dramatically reduced the crop. Fortunately, warm weather at bloom time gave us a good set from the flowers that survived the frost.
The grapes ripened evenly through the cool summer. When we harvested in mid and late October, we managed to get two tons per acre of very high quality grapes. We picked our youngest, 21-year-old block first. As usual, the older vines took longer to ripen.
We aged the wine in a selected combination of barrels (26% new French, 25% new American, and 49% older barrels.) The vintage produced flavors and tannins that evolved more rapidly than usual (reminding us of 1991, another year with very cool summer temperatures), so we bottled after 13 months to keep the oak and fruit balanced.
October 15 & 27, 2008
Brix at Harvest:
Aged for 13 months in 53% French and 47% American oak barrels; 51% new oak
December 9, 2009