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1997 Turley "Grist" Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel

SKU #330488

92-95 points Robert Parker: "The 1997 Zinfandel Grist Vineyard (16.3% alcohol) is a perfumed, aromatic wine with a glorious display of cherry fruit. Think of a terrific red Burgundy with an element of sur-maturite and an unprecedented alcohol level, and readers may get a sense of what this blockbuster tastes like. The wine exhibits a dense ruby/purple color, fabulous purity, copious amounts of glycerin, and layers of kirsch/cherry fruit. This head-turning, knock-out Zinfandel will be especially admired by both lovers of Burgundy and those who admire the famed Chateauneuf du Pape, Rayas. It should drink well for 7-8 years." (06/99) 92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar: "Ruby-red. Urgent aromas of crushed red and black berries, and black pepper. Supersweet but not cooked; thick and spicy. Impressively long and ripe on the back end, but retains good freshness. The best Grist vintage to date, and approachable already." (May/June '99) 91 points Wine Spectator: "Smooth, ripe and jammy, with layers of plum, cherry, wild berry and blackberry. Finishes with firm, drying tannins." (06/99)

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Price: $44.99

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- 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).