2011 Denner "Ditch Digger" Paso Robles Rhône Blend

SKU #1159706 93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Inky ruby. An exotically perfumed bouquet displays scents of dark berries, potpourri and incense, along with a smoky note of olive tapenade. Rich, palate-coating cassis and mulberry preserve flavors are complemented by smoky mineral and bitter chocolate nuances. An emphatically rich but energetic wine that finishes with a strong jolt of smoky Indian spices and smooth tannins.  (12/2013)

93 points Vinous

 Denner's 2011 Ditch Digger is a wine of great textural finesse. Sweet tobacco, dried herbs, flowers and spices all meld together beautifully in the glass. Silky, polished and utterly impeccable, the 2011 impresses for its balance and overall sense of harmony. Black olives, savory herbs and spices linger on the finish. This is yet another great showing from Denner. The blend is 40% Grenache, 30% Syra, 15% Mourvedre, 10% Cinsault and 5% Counoise. Anthony Yount is without question one of the most thoughtful and introspective winemakers in Paso Robles. Young is among those trying to add dimensions of finesse to his wines, and he is succeeding big time. This is a fabulous set of 2011s, but it’s just the start for a winemaker who has a brilliant career ahead of him. Denner is one of the elite estates in Paso Robles. I can't recommend these wines highly enough.  (7/2013)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2011 The Ditch Digger also needs another year or two to round into form. Offering up beautiful black fruits, smoke and pepper intermixed with spice and earthy nuances, it flows onto the palate with a medium to full-bodied, elegant feel that carries rich flavors and sweet tannin. It’s nicely done and possesses an outstanding mix of richness and freshness. Drink 2015-2021. This was a beautiful lineup of wines by winemaker Anthony Yount and I continue to be impressed with the wines of this estate. Located on the western edge of Paso Robles, the wines possess individual, unique characters that show not only Paso fruit, but balance and restraint. They’re highly recommended. (JD)  (8/2013)

Wine Spectator

 Broad, ripe, rich and supple, with subtle yet gripping tannins underlying the blueberry and wild berry flavors, ending with drying, cedar-laced tannins. Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre, Cinsaut and Counoise. Drink now through 2022. (Web-2014)

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Staff Image By: Jason Marwedel | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/6/2014 | Send Email
Denner is a very exciting winery, whose experimentation with Rhone varietals has lead to some very interesting wines. The Ditch Digger offers sappy pomegranate fruit concentration on the palate, with notes of pipe tobacco and bacon fat. This wine is no light-weight, but maintains fine tannin and polished edges throughout.

Additional Information:


Rhone Blends


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:

Paso Robles

- Located about halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, this inland AVA enjoys a sunny and hot growing period while its seaside neighbors hang in the fog. Zinfandel is the traditional red grape of choice, though cabernet, chardonnay, and Rhône varietals are gaining favor. Most are made in a fruit-forward, early drinking style.