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Posts tagged ‘Russian River Valley’

Zinfandel of the Month – 2014 Limerick Lane Zinfandel Russian River Valley

Zinfandel of the Month is a regular feature on Zinfandel Chronicles. Keep in mind that although the Zinfandel of the Month might be an older bottle, the current vintage will be one you can find at retail or via the mailing list.

The May Zinfandel of the Month is the 2014 Limerick Lane Zinfandel Russian River Valley.

Limerick Lane Winery is in the Russian River Valley just south of the town of Healdsburg.The Del Fava family planted the oldest currently producing vineyard at Limerick Lane in 1910, a field blend consisting mostly of Zinfandel. In 1977, the Del Favas sold their thirty acre property to brothers Michael and Tom Collins. The two brothers began by selling some of the grapes to local wineries including De Loach, Ravenswood and Gary Farrell. In 1985, Limerick Lane Cellars was created. By 2009, Mike Collins was ready to sell and asked his neighbor Jake Bilbro if he would like to buy Limerick Lane and the Collins Vineyard. For two years Jake pitched nearly every bank in California before a local bank in Healdsburg finally agreed to give him the loan.

Ruby red in color. 14.8% ABV. Mostly Zinfandel with small amounts of inter-planted Peloursin, Negrette, and Petite Sirah. Showstopping nose of red fruits, cracked pepper and flowers. Super rich and polished with tremendous acidity. Exceptional balance. Raspberry compote, cherries and baking spices on the palate. The finish is very long on this succulent Zinfandel. Lots to like here and it bodes well for the higher end bottlings in this vintage. Drink over the next 4-6 years.

My rating: 93 points.

This wine was recently released and is $42 at the winery and retail.

I’ve been following Limerick Lane since the early 90’s. Consistently delicious Zins and the vineyard could not be in better hands right now. The mailing list here is highly recommended.

I blogged about Limerick Lane Vineyard previously in Top 10 Old Vine Zinfandel Vineyards.

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2002 Dehlinger Pinot Noir Octagon Vineyard – Bottle Notes

Dehlinger Winery is located in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County and was founded in 1975 by Tom and Carole Dehlinger. Eva Dehlinger took over winemaking duties in 2007. Known for their Pinot Noir, Dehlinger also makes Chardonnay, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Sirah.

The grapes for Dehlinger Wines are largely grown on the Estate Vineyard in the Russian River Valley. The initial vines were planted in 1975 and followed by subsequent plantings through 1989. A special 3.5-acre plot of Pinot Noir was planted in 1982 around the original octagon-shaped house on the top of the property. This site is referred to as Octagon Vineyard. The 900-square-foot eight-sided house was built in 1975-76. The house on Octagon Hill has become a Russian River Valley landmark.

Light red in color. 14.8% ABV. Pretty nose of red fruits, damp forest floor, cloves and sarsaparilla. Complex and elegant with amazing texture. Light to medium body with perfect acidity. Strawberries, cranberries, baking spices and a touch of fresh mint on the palate. The finish is long and seamless. Gorgeous Pinot Noir. Drink over the next few years.

My rating: 93 points.

Dehlinger Winery has a great reputation among wine connoisseurs. Wine writers have consistently given strong reviews while praising the winery for its uniqueness, quality, consistency and value. About 75% of their wine is sold via the mailing list. Amazing wines that are well worth the search.

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2008 Dehlinger Pinot Noir Estate – Bottle Notes

Dehlinger Winery is located in the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County and was founded in 1975 by Tom and Carole Dehlinger. Eva Dehlinger took over winemaking duties in 2007. Known for their Pinot Noir, Dehlinger also makes Chardonnay, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Sirah.

The grapes for Dehlinger Wines are largely grown on the Estate Vineyard in the Russian River Valley. The initial vines were planted in 1975 and followed by subsequent plantings through 1989.

Garnet in color. 14.9% ABV. Showstopping nose of red fruits, cloves, baking spices and pine needle. Medium body with nice acidity and perfect balance. Texture and mouth feel reminiscent of the very best Dehlinger Pinots. Cherries, strawberries, earth and a bit of cola on the palate. The finish is long and spicy. One of the very best Dehlinger Pinot Noirs in recent memory. Drink over the next 2-4 years.

My rating: 95 points.

Dehlinger Winery has a great reputation among wine connoisseurs. Wine writers have consistently given strong reviews while praising the winery for its uniqueness, quality, consistency and value. About 75% of their wine is sold via the mailing list. Amazing wines that are well worth the search.

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2003 J. Rochioli Pinot Noir Little Hill Vineyard – Bottle Notes

Rochioli is one of the true pioneers in Russian River Valley, with a winemaking history dating back to the the late 1950′s. In 1987 Rochioli released their first estate wine, the 1985 Rochioli Pinot Noir. Although best known for their world class Pinot Noir, Rochioli also produces remarkable Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Little Hill Vineyard is a small 2.8 acre parcel of Rochioli Vineyard planted in 1993 planted from West Block Vineyard cuttings. The winery recently published a detailed map of the Estate Vineyard that is required viewing for fans of the winery.

Light red in color. 14.2% ABV. Brooding nose of black cherries, cloves and forest floor. Surprisingly big and muscular with medium acidity. The structure belies the 13 years of bottle age. Cherries, cranberries, anise and mint on the palate. The finish is long with silky tannins. Delicious but somewhat atypical. Drink over the next 1-2 years.

My rating: 91 points.

The current version was approximately $78 off the mailing list.

At present time (and for the foreseeable future) buying from Rochioli via the mailing list is not an option. The Estate wines do show up at retail periodically, and the winery’s Russian River Valley tasting room is still open for public tasting. They may only be pouring a couple of wines, but it’s a great opportunity to buy a bottle for a picnic on their lovely patio and a few more to bring home for the cellar.

I’ve blogged about Rochioli previously in the The 2016 Zinfandel Chronicles Power Rankings and the Fab 5 of Mailing Lists.

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2013 Limerick Lane Zinfandel Russian River Valley – Bottle Notes

Limerick Lane Winery is in the Russian River Valley just south of the town of Healdsburg.The Del Fava family planted the oldest currently producing vineyard at Limerick Lane in 1910, a field blend consisting mostly of Zinfandel. In 1977, the Del Favas sold their thirty acre property to brothers Michael and Tom Collins. The two brothers began by selling some of the grapes to local wineries including De Loach, Ravenswood and Gary Farrell. In 1985, Limerick Lane Cellars was created. By 2009, Mike Collins was ready to sell and asked his neighbor Jake Bilbro if he would like to buy Limerick Lane and the Collins Vineyard. For two years Jake pitched nearly every bank in California before a local bank in Healdsburg finally agreed to give him the loan. Jake’s brother Scot is the current winemaker.

Bright crimson in color. 14.6% ABV. Super nose of black fruits, tar and black pepper. Loads of fruit on the palate with a creamy texture and juicy acidity. Flavors of blackberry, raspberry liqueur and pepper. The wine has a strong finish with subtle tannins. Drink over the next 4-6 years. Bodes well for some of the higher end Zins from Limerick Lane in this vintage.

My rating: 92 points.

I’ve been following Limerick Lane since the early 90’s. Consistently delicious Zins and the vineyard could not be in better hands right now. The mailing list here is highly recommended.

I blogged about Limerick Lane Vineyard previously in Top 10 Old Vine Zinfandel Vineyards.

If you enjoyed this post please consider subscribing to Zinfandel Chronicles updates by email.

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2010 Rochioli Pinot Noir Estate – Bottle Notes

Rochioli is one of the true pioneers in Russian River Valley, with a winemaking history dating back to the the late 1950′s. In 1987 Rochioli released their first estate wine, the 1985 Rochioli Pinot Noir. Although best known for their world class Pinot Noir, Rochioli also produces remarkable Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

The winery recently published a detailed map of the Estate Vineyard that is required viewing for fans of the winery.

Crimson in color. 14.5% ABV. Gorgeous nose of red fruits, cloves, nutmeg and earth. Medium body with tremendous acidity. Perfectly balanced with nice mouth feel. Black cherry, strawberry, cranberry and pomegranate on the palate. The finish is exceptionally long. Drink over the next 4-6 years.

My rating: 92 points.

The current version was approximately $58 off the mailing list.

At present time (and for the foreseeable future) buying from Rochioli via the mailing list is not an option. The Estate wines do show up at retail periodically, and the winery’s Russian River Valley tasting room is still open for public tasting. They may only be pouring a couple of wines, but it’s a great opportunity to buy a bottle for a picnic on their lovely patio and a few more to bring home for the cellar.

I’ve blogged about Rochioli previously in the The 2015 Zinfandel Chronicles Power Rankings and the Fab 5 of Mailing Lists.

If you enjoyed this post please consider subscribing to Zinfandel Chronicles updates by email.

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2002 Rochioli Pinot Noir West Block Vineyard – Bottle Notes

Rochioli is one of the true pioneers in Russian River Valley, with a winemaking history dating back to the the late 1950′s. Although best known for their world class Pinot Noir, Rochioli also produces remarkable Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Rochioli recently published a detailed map of the Estate Vineyard that is required viewing for fans of the winery.

The grapes for this wine come from a 1.5 acre parcel of Rochioli Vineyard that was planted in 1969. Some of the oldest Pinot vines in California.

Crimson in color with some bricking at the edge of the glass. 14.2% ABV. Gorgeous nose of black fruits, baking spice, cloves and minerals. Light in body with perfect acidity. Black cherry, cranberry, sassafras and spice on the palate. The finish is seamless, plush and incredibly long. Great showing from the top wine in the Rochioli portfolio. It’s only April but this may be the best domestic Pinot Noir I drink this year. This wine still has some life left in it. Drink over the next 1-3 years.

My rating: 95 points.

The current version is $110 off the mailing list.

At present time (and for the foreseeable future) buying from Rochioli via the mailing list is not an option. The Estate wines do show up at retail periodically, and the winery’s Russian River Valley tasting room is still open for public tasting. They may only be pouring a couple of wines, but it’s a great opportunity to buy a bottle for a picnic on their lovely patio and a few more to bring home for the cellar.

I’ve blogged about Rochioli previously in the Zinfandel Chronicles Power Rankings, Reflections on Two Days in the Russian River Valley and the Fab 5 of Mailing Lists.

If you enjoyed this post please consider subscribing to Zinfandel Chronicles updates by email.

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2002 Rochioli Pinot Noir Three Corner Vineyard – Bottle Notes

Rochioli is one of the true pioneers in Russian River Valley, with a winemaking history dating back to the the late 1950′s. Although best known for their world class Pinot Noir, Rochioli also produces remarkable Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Three Corner Vineyard is a small triangle shaped parcel at the southern end of Rochioli Vineyard. The winery recently published a detailed map of the Estate Vineyard that is required viewing for fans of the winery.

Crimson in color. 14.2% ABV. Super nose of red fruits, sarsaparilla and cloves. Medium body with excellent acidity. Great length and depth on the palate. Flavors of cranberry, black cherry and spice. The finish is long and belies the fact that this wine is 13 years old. A great showing. Russian River Valley Pinot Noir at its very finest. Drink over the next year or two.

My rating: 95 points.

The current version is $85 off the mailing list.

At present time (and for the foreseeable future) buying from Rochioli via the mailing list is not an option. The Estate wines do show up at retail periodically, and the winery’s Russian River Valley tasting room is still open for public tasting. They may only be pouring a couple of wines, but it’s a great opportunity to buy a bottle for a picnic on their lovely patio and a few more to bring home for the cellar.

I’ve blogged about Rochioli previously in the Zinfandel Chronicles Power Rankings, Reflections on Two Days in the Russian River Valley and the Fab 5 of Mailing Lists.

If you enjoyed this post please consider subscribing to Zinfandel Chronicles updates by email.

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2009 Kosta Browne Pinot Noir Russian River Valley – Bottle Notes

Kosta Browne began as a dream shared by Dan Kosta and Michael Browne. In the summer of 1997, while working at John Ash & Co. restaurant in Santa Rosa, California, Dan and Michael decided to pool their tips and venture into winemaking. Fifteen years later, Kosta Browne is one of the most sought after Pinot Noirs in all of California. At present time they produce three appellation Pinot Noirs, eight single vineyard Pinot Noirs and a Chardonnay.

The 2009 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir is a blend of vineyards that surround the Sebastopol home of Kosta Browne.

Dark red in color. 14.6% ABV. Dark fruits, roses and brown sugar on the nose. Medium body with medium acidity. The wine has a darker fruit profile than I am accustomed to from KB. Great flavors of black cherry, cranberries, strawberries and cinnamon. The wine gains weight in the glass over the course of several hours and finishes strong. Drink over the next several years.

My rating: 92 points.

The 2013 was released earlier this month and is $64 at the winery. As I mentioned in the Fab 5 of Mailing Lists, Kosta Browne is one of hardest lists to crack. Maybe so, but you’ve got nothing to lose by putting your name on the waiting list. Good luck!

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Zinfandel of the Month – 2012 ACORN Zinfandel Alegria Vineyards

Zinfandel of the Month is a regular feature on Zinfandel Chronicles. Keep in mind that although the Zinfandel of the Month might be an older bottle, the current vintage will be one you can find at retail or via the mailing list.

The November Zinfandel of the Month is the 2012 ACORN Zinfandel Heritage Vines Allegria Vineyards.

Bill and Betsy Nachbaur purchased Alegria Vineyard in 1990. Situated in the Russian River Valley, Alegría Vineyards has 26 acres planted with Zinfandel, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Sangiovese, Dolcetto, Petite Sirah, Alicante Bouschet, and many lesser-known varieties. The oldest part of the vineyard dates back to the 1890’s.

For the first many years Bill farmed the vineyard and the grapes were sold. ACORN Winery was founded in 1994 and the first release was a Sangiovese in 1996. Clay Mauritson is the consulting winemaker.

The 2012 Heritage Vines Zinfandel is actually a blend of 17 different varieties. 78% Zinfandel, 13% Alicante Bouschet and 7% Petite Sirah. The remaining 2% of the field blend is comprised of 14 varieties.

The wine is purple in color. 14.5% ABV. Brambly red fruits, spices and plums on the nose. Full bodied with healthy acidity. Rich, plush and juicy. Strawberry, raspberry compote, pepper and vanilla on the palate. Terrific Zinfandel that is right in my wheelhouse. Drink over the next 2-4 years.

My rating: 92 points.

$45 at the winery and select retail in just a few states.

ACORN Winery is open for sales and tasting by appointment only. I look forward to visiting on my next trip to the Russian River Valley.

This review was based on a sample provided by the winery.

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