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Ridge 2012 & 2013 Dusi Ranch Zinfandel

The Wine Wednesday pick this week are two bottles we bought at an auction we attended this week-end. It was a fundraiser for the arts, and a good amount of wine groupings were part of the silent auction. Ridge Vineyards hold a special place in our hearts, so we were eager to bid on these bottle as well as a few others that were part of this package. We were the lucky ‘winners’ as they say in auction speak. We have not popped open these yet, but I have a some notes from the maker.

2012 Vintage: The warm, dry 2012 growing season fully ripened the fruit on these ninety-year-old vines. Each parcel was fermented separately, and the two richest selected for the Dusi Ranch. A wine of great intensity, it can only be made in the best of warm vintages. Twelve months in barrel has rounded and integrated the tannins. This exotic wine has highlyscented bramble fruit, and the full, ripe flavors of a Paso Robles zinfandel. It will be enjoyable over the next eight to ten years.

2013 Vintage: Serious drought affected all of California, but Paso Robles suffered most. In response, Beni Dusi irrigated once, at bud-break, to carry the vines through a dry spring and summer. By mid-September’s harvest, water stress had begun to intensify the fruit. We chose Canyon Block, with its powerful flavors, for the Dusi. Seventeen months in tempered american oak has softened tannins, and clarified the wine naturally, by settling. Enjoyable now, it will develop fully over the next six to eight years.

This post really is about the idea of tasting/serving at a dinner the same wine from different vintages. It is a fun way to learn about wine. How nuanced it can be from year to year. How weather conditions ultimately affect what ends up in the bottle. You see just how Mother Nature plays a leading role in the making of wine. I find it all hugely fascinating. It makes for great dinner conversation among guests. 



 

 

Ridge 2013 Geyserville

20160217-050531.jpg This Wine Wednesday post is about a truly sublime bottle, the 2013 Geyserville, from Ridge Vineyards. We have been Ridge fans for close to 20 years, first being exposed to the wine at a lovely 50th birthday party we attend in California of our dear friend Cara Wells at the winery way up in the hills of Cupertino. Her father was a fan of the wine since the winery began in the 60’s, with the producing of their Zinfandel which put them on the map. What an awesome site for a party! It was then that our love affair with Ridge began. We had a bottle of the Geyserville on Sunday evening with our Valentine supper. The 2013 is lovely now but with only get better over the next ten years. The moment this wine hits our palette, we are instantly taken back to that very first time we enjoyed it. As I said earlier, sublime.

From the makers site:
Ridge has made the Geyserville as a single-site Zinfandel every year since 1966. The grapes are grown in three adjoining vineyards on a defined stretch of gravelly soil. Winter rains ended in December, and a warm February prompted early bud-break. Light rains in April saved the day, and let the vines set a full crop. This was the most uniform and evenly ripe vintage in many years. Fermentations began quickly, and we pressed on day seven. In assemblage, thirty-five percent of the lots were held out—an especially rigorous selection. The wine has elegant structure, intense berry fruit, and firm acid.