Wednesday, November 28, 2018
Don Wallace/Dry Creek Vineyard/Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel
Recently I traveled into the town of Healdsburg in northern California.This beautiful town in a wine country hub for many famous grape growing regions. we will be staying at the Dry Creek Best Western Inn,which is minutes from the world class growing region known as Dry Creek Valley. Our feature is Dry Creek vineyard and Mr. Don Wallace. First we will check out a little history of this great winery,and then checkout the tasting notes on two of their world class Zinfandels. The history of Dry Creek Vineyard is a long and colorful one. Founded in 1972 by David S. Stare, Dry Creek Vineyard paved the way for a renaissance of winemaking and viticulture in the Dry Creek Valley. Before his arrival, the Dry Creek Valley was little more than a few family farms and prune orchards. It was Dave’s vision to start a Loire Valley inspired winery, which triggered a viticultural reawakening in northern Sonoma County. Without a doubt, David Stare is a pioneer. Heading west in the late 1960s, he personified the character and work ethic of early Gold Rush pioneers. Educated at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Dave worked for the B&O Railroad for several years but quickly realized that his true calling was in the wine industry. Inspired by his trips to the Loire Valley, he headed west to California to start his own family winery. Today, our second-generation family owned winery continues to evolve and grow to meet the demands of a global wine marketplace. The primary mission of our winery is to produce distinctive wines that overdeliver on quality. For nearly 50 years, this pursuit of winemaking excellence has led to many international awards and accolades. With a loyal following of wine club members and customers, the future of Dry Creek Vineyard has never been brighter. Zinfandel may be California’s most distinguished contribution to the world of fine wine. Just as Pinot Noir is synonymous with Burgundy, Zinfandel is most at home in the Dry Creek Valley appellation. Today we will open two great Zinfandels.First The Heritage Vines. Heritage Vines Zinfandel affirms our dedication to Zinfandel. Our Heritage Vines Zinfandel comes from an experimental project initiated in 1982 by our Vineyard Manager, Duff Bevill, to preserve the tradition and “heritage” of very old Zinfandel vineyards. Cuttings from Mazzoni Ranch, a pre-Prohibition vineyard near Geyserville, provided budwood for grafting onto phylloxera-resistant rootstock. Then, for several years we worked diligently to screen and propagate virus-free vines that would ultimately produce a crop. Finally, in 1997 the process concluded with a “young vine” wine that displayed “old vine” Zinfandel characteristics. For us, the future of Old Vine Zinfandel is no longer in doubt. By implementing this process, we feel that the flavors, character, and heritage of these old vineyards will live on in future vintages of our Heritage Vines Zinfandel.You can read more on these wines on their website. Beginning with the 1987 vintage, Dry Creek Vineyard was the first winery to consistently use the term “Old Vine.” Old Vine Zinfandel comes from historic vineyards ranging from 50 to over 100 years in age. Production is very limited as these vines typically yield only 1-2 tons per acre. We are fortunate to be associated with these unique vineyards and are proud to share this exceptional wine with you. Our Old Vine Zinfandel is known for its depth of flavor and spicy, earthy characteristics. Deep color and firm structure are enhanced by the addition of our region’s best Petite Sirah. It is a rich and powerful wine, sure to please even the most discerning palate. The 2016 Heritage Vines Zinfandel is delicious and beautifully balanced. This vintage presents enticing aromatics of raspberries, cherry and a hint of toast and black pepper. On the palate, brambly flavors of ripe boysenberry and spicy dark chocolate come forward. The wine is complex, with bright acidity complimented by notes of berry syrup and mocha. The tannins are silky and smooth to lend a round, rich mouthfeel. From start to finish, this remarkable wine offers refreshing acidy paired with excellent structure. At $24.00,this wine is a great deal and I think ill take home a case today! Our second wine is the Old Vine Zinfandel! The complexity of our Old Vine Zinfandel lies in the spicy notes that are unique to these historic properties. This vintage presents alluring aromatics of blackberries, dried cranberries and a hint of mocha and nutmeg. On the palate, brambly layers of ripe boysenberry, raspberry and dark chocolate come forward. The wine is complex, with bright acidity complimented by a long, lingering finish of black pepper. The tannins are velvety and smooth to lend a round, rich mouthfeel. If you love Zinfandel you will enjoy our next few features with Don Wallace and Dry Creek Vineyard! I can safely say this winery is a source of some of the best Zinfandels on the planet!So let's pour a glass of each of these wines,and sit down to listen to our feature with Mr. Don Wallace!Click on the link and join us!We saved you a seat! Click here and join us as we enjoy great wines and stories of Dry Creek Vineyard.