2010 Zinfandel Heritage Vines™ Alegría Vineyards
91 points - Wine Spectator Online
93 points - Purely Domestic Wine Report
Best of Class & Double Gold Medal - 2012 West Coast Wine Competition
Double Gold Medal - 2012 San Francisco International Wine Competition
Gold Medal - 2012 Orange County Fair Wine Competition
Richly concentrated blackberry and mocha aromas with just a kiss of black pepper burst onto your senses. The spicy, jammy flavors mirror the intensity found in the aroma. Vanillin oak and hints of coffee and anise thread through the lush, juicy mixed berry blend. The flavors deepen, becoming even more concentrated as they fill the palate with their delicious essence.
A lovely balance of fruit, oak, and tannins cradles this spicy yet creamy textured Zin, which concludes with a lingering, full finish.
In 2010, an unusual 20 days of rain in May and exceptionally cool weather in June delayed ripening. Warm days finally arrived in July. Then a record-shattering heat wave hit the grapes on August 24 and 25. We saw the mercury climb from 50° in the morning to 107° in the afternoon! After the two days of triple-digit heat, we’d lost about half the crop to raisining.
Temperature returned to normal, and when the surviving grapes ripened, we meticulously trimmed the raisins from each cluster. Yield from the vineyard was a miniscule 0.6 tons/acre. It took all day to pick grapes we normally could have picked in a few hours.
Fermentation with the Rockpile yeast strain accentuated the aromas and flavors that typify our Heritage Vines Zinfandel. We aged the wine 17 months in a combination of barrels we selected to provide spice and smooth tannins that support the flavors and aromas of the wine. Another 17 months of bottle aging allowed the flavors to further integrate. The painstaking hand sorting in the vineyard and obsessive attention to detail in the winery paid off: The 2010 may be the best Zinfandel we’ve ever made.