2016 Rockpile Zin
Varietals: 88% Zinfandel, 12% Petite Syrah
Oak: 58% New French
Cases Produced: 580
One of the smallest American Vinicultural Areas (AVAs), Rockpile could be the most unique place to grow Zinfandel in the world. This vineyard sits high above Lake Sonoma, at elevations of over 800 ft. Erosion on these hillside slopes means very little topsoil, creating poor soil nutrition, ensuring that the vines struggle to ripen what little fruit they can set. The vineyard is located about 15 miles from the coast, so onshore winds constantly irritate the vines, diminishing water retention, and contribute to even lower yields. Moderate temperatures are perfect for ripening redder fruit flavor profiles, with concentration and depth a happy byproduct. This is a unique location producing extraordinary wines.
This unfined and unfiltered wine has a nose of strawberry, boysenberry, and spice. Firm acidity first sets in, but there is also a noticeable weight carried through the mid-palate that marries the acid and tannin beautifully. Strawberry and spice continue to shine, and the finish is pure vanilla and concentrated red fruit.