2009 Carlisle "Carlisle Vineyard" Russian River Valley Zinfandel
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2009 Zinfandel Carlisle Vineyard shows gorgeous purity in its freshly cut roses, sweet red cherries, tobacco, leather and sweet herbs. Here the profile tends towards the redder end of the spectrum. This cooler site within the Russian River yields wines with bright acidity and plenty of freshness. The vines were originally planted in 1927, with 93% Zinfandel and roughly 7% other red varieties. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2021. (AG)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Opaque violet. Room-filling aromas of blackberry, mulberry, Moroccan spices and incense. Then wonderfully bright and sappy in the mouth, with lively acidity giving shape and lift to the intense flavors of dark berries, candied flowers and spicecake. I find this wine utterly hypnotic. Finishes with superb spicy persistence and serious power. Officer told me that 7% of the grapes used for this wine were alicante bouschet, grand noir, petite sirah, peloursin, tempranillo and various other mixed blacks.
Dense and brooding, with floral boysenberry and licorice aromas and deep, layered flavors of tart blueberry, fresh sage and mineral. Tannins are big but ripe. Needs time. Best from 2013 through 2017.
According to Wine Advocate: "This is a fabulous set of wines from Mike Officer and Carlisle. Best of all, the wines remain very reasonably priced considering the quality and passion that goes into the bottle. Along with Morgan Twain-Peterson of Bedrock, Mike Officer is focused on seeking out the finest old-vine sites in California, which have either been neglected over the years, or are being bought by large-scale wineries who have little interest in discovering the quirks of these very old vineyards, most of which are planted with field blends that truly harken back to another era. The wines are made with indigenous yeasts and aged in French oak barrels, usually in the 20-30% range. I tasted all of the 2010s from barrel the day before they were scheduled to be moved into tank." (02/2012, AG)