2008 Martinelli "Jackass Vineyard" Russian River Valley Zinfandel

SKU #1058405 94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2008 Zinfandel Jackass Vineyard has one of those “wow” aromatic profiles. Although not saturated in color (it is dark plum/garnet), it boasts a huge nose of incense, camphor, smoked meats, herbs, forest floor and jammy strawberries as well as cherries. It is a full-bodied, dry, textured, classic, old style, “packed and stacked” Zinfandel that, despite its lofty alcohol (16.6%), is not the least bit hot. This is stunning stuff from one of the great historic sites of California. Drink it over the next 10-15+ years. The venerable Martinelli winery, one of the iconic families and longtime growers in Sonoma, has turned out another impressive group of wines.  (2/2011)

94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Opaque violet. Vibrant, highly aromatic nose displays spicy red berries and potpourri complicated by cola and smoky spice notes. Deeply concentrated raspberry and cherry flavors show a liqueur-like sweetness and are brightened by emphatic notes of candied flowers and black pepper. The spicy note lingers on the lively, smoky, long finish, which repeats the red fruit and floral notes. I really like this wine's vivacity and clarity, especially given its power.  (6/2010)

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Price: $99.99
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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.
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.
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).