2012 Storybook Mountain "Estate Reserve" Napa Valley Zinfandel

SKU #1224503 94 points Wine & Spirits

 If you go for a hike in the Palisades above Napa Valley, this is what the summer air smells like—sage, manzanita and wild flowers. That multidimensional scent gives the wine a floral, spicy aromatic complexity rarely found in Napa Valley reds. This is a lean and muscular Zin, and though it may not have the kind of energy that sustains Storybook’s best Estate Reserves for decades in the cellar, it is tightly focused, its ripe fruit tunneling through mineral-inflected tannins and making an imprint on the palate that lasts. Perhaps its marathon-runner’s build will keep it in shape as it ages. For now, it’s a testament to how Napa Valley Zinfandel can be much prettier than Cabernet.  (8/2015)

90 points Connoisseurs Guide

 *One Star* Although fairly ripe and very solidly fruity with the unmistakable blackberry bias of Zinfandel, this slow-to-unfold wine is a little tight and withdrawn and takes its time to come to full voice. Its first feint to softness is followed by structured firmness and nominal tannins, and, if never quite juicy, its ample fruit quietly holds and holds. As is usually the case with wines from its maker, it is a Zin meant to be aged, and, if it follows in the footsteps of its Estate Reserve forerunners, it will have a very long life ahead.  (9/2015)

90 points Wine Spectator

 Well-built, with rich fruit notes and a central core of focused tannin and acid. Aromas of black cherry and fresh sage open to powerful flavors of boysenberry, licorice and pepper that linger toward full tannins. Drink now through 2021. (TF, Web-2016)

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Price: $49.99
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Staff Image By: Andrew Whiteley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/11/2016 | Send Email
Do you own a wine cellar, rent a locker, or have a big wine fridge? You’d do well to fill it with Storybook Reserve Zinfandel. One of Dr. Seps' goals in making wine is to find intensity without unnecessary weight. He has certainly achieved it here in his reserve. The nose is off the charts with blackberries, raspberries, sweet and pungent spices and a cool herbal note somewhere between mint and eucalyptus. The palate is a great balance between firm tannic structure, bright fruit and acidity, and the glycerol texture of just the right level of alcohol. It is lean and powerful, built to rest easily for a decade or more to reward the patient. If you’re like I am, you’ll definitely enjoy a few now and save a few for later.

Staff Image By: Kirk Walker | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/31/2016 | Send Email
I cannot remember the last time I had a Zin that evoked this response from me. It has very ripe fruit, think warm from the sun fresh from the vine, ripe. The purity of the fruit is enhanced by the spice, it is very spicy but is a pleasant herbal vegetal sense. It is full but in a linear way, more Cab like than what you normal think of Zin. Good tannins, good acidity this is a wine of structure, fruit and complexity. Drink now but this is a Zin for the ages.

Additional Information:



- 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.

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.


- 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:

Napa Valley

- America's most famous wine region, which encompasses a varied geographical territory running about 20 miles long from the San Francisco Bay northward to the foot of Mount St. Helena. Napa's great diversity, both in terms of climate and terroir, has led to the creation of a number of smaller AVAs like Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Oakville and Mount Veeder, among others. Cabernet and chardonnay still reign supreme, but just about everything under the sun is grown in Napa Valley, in quality levels ranging from $2 jug wine to $500 a bottle California cab.
Alcohol Content (%): 14.9