As many of you know, the 132-year-old ‘Ancient Vine’ Zinfandel estate vineyard in Sonoma is one of my favorite vineyards and produces one of my favorite wines. It’s interesting how I know the age of the vineyards; one my father’s closest friends Joe Degrassio’s sister married into the family that planted the six-acre vineyard in 1880. Although I don’t know specifics about the clone, it’s quite likely that it came from Italy in a suitcase, as so many clones did back then. If only these vines could talk! Well, I suppose they do tell their stories – in your glass.
This wine is for the serious Zinfandel enthusiast – certainly not for the timid! Everything a Zin should be and more. On the nose, a delightful spectrum of strawberry, blackberry, bittersweet chocolate, fig and hints of white pepper. The lush palate is complex and lovely, with intense chocolate, cocoa, blackberry and blueberry spice. The finish is seemingly endless, with an ocean of black fruit slowly receding from a wave of blackberry, chocolate and fig. Ruby majesty!
If you happen to have a bottle of this wine around, beef spareribs or a nice rib eye steak are incredible pairing ideas. My mouth is watering just thinking about the possibilities! It’s a gem of a Zin.