2008 Ridge Vineyards "East Bench" Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel

SKU #1056209 90-92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The more powerful 2008 Zinfandel East Bench (100% Zinfandel; nearly 15% alcohol) boasts a dark plum/ruby color in addition to a big, sweet bouquet of briery fruit, earth, and pepper. Softer and fleshier than the 2007, it is meant for near-term consumption...(RP)  (2/2010)

92 points Wine & Spirits

 **Best Buy** Ridge may be known for old-vine Zin but the future is with the young, like this vineyard the Ridge team planted between 2000 and '01 using massal selection from four pre-Prohibition vineyards. This Zin grows on iron-rich clay loam and river rock, trained as bush vines, yielding a wine with bold intensity and a friendly sort of finesse. It's bright, vinous and spicy, with Zinny florals that seem to rise right out of the meaty tennins. Old vines rarely produce a wine with this sort of exuberance. Decant it for roast lamb.  (2/2011)

91 points Wine Spectator

 A classically styled Dry Creek Zinfandel, with briary cherry and spicy dill aromas and flavors that open with a burst of ripe raspberry but evolve into dry, crisp plum and licorice notes, with rustic tannins. Drink now through 2016  (6/2011)

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Saturated ruby. Powerful aromas of ripe red and dark fruits, musky herbs and flowers, with slow-building spiciness. Warm and expansive in the mouth, offering lush cherry and blackberry flavors and notes of vanilla and anise. Dusty tannins add gentle grip to the finish, but this zinfandel leads with its fruit, which absorbs any edges. This could be drunk now with pleasure.  (5/2011)

Wine Enthusiast

 This is a direct, drink-me-now- fruity Zinfandel with the flavors of raspberry-cherry granola bar. There's a sweet, roasted almond and brown sugar edge, with lots of black pepper. Drink now.  (8/2010)

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Price: $34.99
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Staff Image By: Kyle Kurani | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/13/2010 | Send Email
A relatively new offering from Ridge, this zinfandel has been met with good reviews, including 90-92 from Parker. Holding true to Ridges single vineyard ethos, this wine hails form a bench of land that separates Alexander and Dry Creek Valleys. These places happen to be two of my favorite regions for zin, and this wine doesn’t disappoint. Full and luscious fruit notes of boysenberry and red cherry coat your mouth, while all the pepper and spice you would expect from Dry Creek come through on the mid and back pallet. Plush without being flabby thanks to well balanced structure, this wine would be a welcome addition to any American summer fare.
Drink from 2010 to 2012

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.


- 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.
Specific Appellation:

Sonoma County

- Second in fame only to Napa, this "other" valley offers just about every climate and topography imaginable. From its cool and fog-enshrouded coastal regions on the far west, to the sprawling Alexander Valley on the boarder of Napa and the many little dips and peaks in between, Sonoma has been a vital wine-grape-growing region since the mid 1800s. Important sub-AVAs include Chalk Hill (known for chardonnay and sauvignon blanc), Dry Creek Valley (where zin is king) Knights Valley (largely cabernet land), Russian River Valley and Sonoma Coast (both celebrated pinot and chardonnay zones).
Alcohol Content (%): 14.9