2003 Ridge Vineyards "Geyserville" Sonoma County Zinfandel (1.5L)

SKU #1020030

Ridge made its first Geyserville in 1966, from nineteenth century vines growing on the western edge of Alexander Valley. Over time, Ridge has included more grapes planted along this quarter-mile-wide strip, which follows the old San Francisco & Northern Pacific Railway right-of-way. This distinctive "single site" now consists of three adjoining vineyards that share the same gravelly soils, exposure, and climate. In 2003, a period of intense heat in mid-September ripened all the zinfandel within two weeks; Ridge harvested non-stop to hold sugars and overripeness in check. Reduced circulation during the natural-yeast fermentations moderated tannin extraction. Pressed at seven days, and a natural malolactic finished within five weeks. After a year of barrel aging in air-dried american oak, the wine was fined with fresh egg whites. This elegant Geyserville is delightful now, but will gain in complexity over the next five to eight years.

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By: Chiara Shannon | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 12/1/2010 | Send Email
The 03 Geyserville is developing beautifully. Made from a blend of 76% Zinfandel, 18% Carignane, and 6% Petite Sirah, tasted recently out of magnum, this wine certainly lived up to the Geyserville reputation of being one of the Ridge Zin bottlings to watch over time. The once rich, extracted berry and plum fruit and sweet oak aromas are softening, moving toward dried fruit and caramel tones. The palate is vibrant and complex, framed by fine tannins. The finish is earthy and spice-accented. This bottle is food-friendly will work with a variety of savory or spicy dishes, but I imagine it especially well-matched with with beef stew, beef curry, or short-ribs, or other hearty, slow-cooked gamey dishes.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Zinfandel

- The bid to name Zinfandel California's "State Varietal" may have failed, but this red wine grape, grown extensively in California since the mid-1800s, is grown in few other places in the world. Sadly, much of what's cultivated today is planted where it's too hot and flat. But when planted to well-drained, hillside vineyards that are warm but not too hot, like those in Sonoma County's Dry Creek Valley and Amador County in the Sierra Foothills, Zinfandel can produce wines with plenty of character. High in natural alcohol and tannin, grown carefully it can be rich and complex, with dark fruit berry fruit and peppery spice. The most known example of Zinfandel outside of California is Italy's Primitivo, which can be similar in style, but is often a bit lighter and less alcoholic than West Coast examples.
Country:

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.
Sub-Region:

California

- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Santa Cruz Mountains

- Vineyards dot the valleys and ridges of this coastal AVA just south of San Francisco. Microclimates make it difficult to generalize, and vineyards are frequently separated by acres of forests and meadowlands (not to mention entire towns!), but this is nonetheless known as a cooler-climate zone ideal for pinot noir. Ridge is doubtless the most famous local producer, with its cabernet blend, Monte Bello, named after a Santa Cruz mountain peak. High-quality, low-production chardonnay and some Rhône varietals prosper as well.