From the rich, red earth The Zinfandels of Mendocino’s Redwood Valley owe everything to the unique rust-colored slopes that bear outstandingly bold fruit.
It makes perfect sense that some of California’s most distinctive Zinfandels come from the Redwood Valley in southern Mendocino County. This is one of the state’s most distinctive viticultural enclaves, with a combination of climate and soils — particularly its deposits of the rare, rust-colored Redvine soil — that rightly may be called unique. There’s nothing else quite like it, anywhere.
Yet for many years these wonderful wines were only on the Zin fanatic’s radar, virtually unknown in the mainstream. Redwood Valley was only recently recognized as an American Viticultural Area. It was the first place in Mendocino County to produce commercial wine grapes (in the 1850s), but it has never had more than a few wineries (eight at the moment). Even today, virtually all its crop (mostly Chardonnay) disappears into blends bottled by large North Coast wineries, so wine lovers seldom get a taste of the valley’s outstanding viticultural character.
However, a staunch corps of Redwood Valley wineries have consistently bottled Zinfandels from the valley’s red-dirt slopes. It was largely on the strength of those wines that Redwood Valley finally became an AVA in 1996. Not a moment too soon. Because a characteristic Redwood Valley Zin is among the glories of California winedom, an archetypal expression of region and grape.
2013 ZINFANDEL – Mendocino
Our Zinfandel comes from 5 different old vine Zinfandel vineyards scattered throughout the benchlands and hillsides of Mendocino County. Old vine vineyards such as Tournour, Kazmet and Zeller grace this fine wine. Many of these vineyar ds are still farmed by 3rd and 4th generation Italian-Americans. This vintage displays a rich dark purple garnet color and deep aromas of black cherry, boysenberry, plum, spicy sandalwood with hints of toasty oak. Uplifting flavors of plum, black cherry cola and a subtle of earthiness combine to give this full-bodied Zinfandel a generous mouth-feel. Rich full tannins and balanced acidity lead into a long, lingering finish.
Enjoy with garlic and rosemary seasoned lamb chops, Italian sausage or spicy tomato pasta dishes. A grilled burger with melted gorgonzola in one hand and this Zin in the other hand is what the good life is all about.
2013 ZINFANDEL RESERVE
This Reserve Zinfandel is a blend of the very best vineyards in Mendocino County, most of them over 50 year old. This eight barrel blend was hand selected by the winemakers, Greg Graziano and Cheson Boatwright for aromatics and flavors. Twenty-eight months of ageing in French Burgundy oak barrels, of which 25% were new, softens the wine and adds complexity to the beautiful aromas and flavors of blackberry and spice. This wine has smooth tannins and a rich elegant finish. This Zinfandel makes an ideal accompaniment to rast beef and grilled steak or lamb.
2013 PETITE SIRAH – Mendocino – Gold Medal Mendocino County Fair 2017
Mendocino County is the largest producer of Petite Sirah in the north coast of California. Our Petite Sirah comes from a combination of old vine vineyards and new high tech vineyards scattered throughout the benchlands and hillsides of Mendocino County.
Roasted meats such as lamb and beef or hearty venison stew bring out the true flavors of this wine.
2014 SAUVIGNON BLANC – Mendocino
Sauvignon Blanc produces some of the greatest white wines of this planet. Its heritage lies in the vineyards of France’s Sancerre, Pouilly (Loire Valley) and Graves (Bordeaux) and this greatness has now spread to the vineyards of Mendocino County.
Perfect accompaniment to grilled halibut, Dungeness crab, oysters on the half shell or many types of Asian cuisine.
2015 CHENIN BLANC – Mendocino – Double Gold Medal Mendocino County Fair 2017
Chenin Blanc produces some of the greatest white wines of France. In the loire region, the wines of Savennieres, Vouvray, and Saumur produce a wide range of styles of Chenin Blanc from sparkling, to sweet and everything in between.
This wine combines the mineral-laced steely acidity and structure of a classic Loire style wine, with the rich, creamy texture and roundness and fullness of fruit of a California wine. Aromas of wet stone, peaches, pear, and citrus all comingle in this racy, complex wine.
Pairs well with seafood or pasta salad and grilled chicken.
This Grenache was grown in the western foothills of the Ukiah Valley in Mendocino County. Shallow rocky soils and the excellent exposure of this vineyard consistently produce grapes that are intensely ripe. 20 months of barrel aging in a combination of French Burgundy, American, and Eastern European oak barrels soften the wine and add complexity to the beautiful blackberry aromas and rich full flavors of black cherry and spice.
2013 Carignane – Best of Show – Reds & Double Gold medal at 2016 Mendocino Wine Competition!
This old vine Carignane comes primarily from a 60 year-old vineyard in the red clay benchlands of Mendocino County. 24 months of barrel aging in French and American oak softens the wine and adds complexity to the intense aromas and full flavors of earth and ripe plum. This wine has a rich full body, big round tannins and a long finish. Serve it with venison, lamb shanks, or with sharp well-aged cheeses.
Syrah is native to the northern Rhone Region of Southeastern France. In its greatest carnation, Syrah produces the wines of Hermitage and Saint Joseph and is a Minor player in the south Rhone region of Chateau- Neuf-Du-Pape and Cote Du Rhone.
This wine shows a brilliant, dark purple garnet color and has deep complex aromas and flavors of boysenberry and ripe plums with hints of white pepper spice, roasted coffee and toasty oak. This wellbalanced wine displays ample acidity and medium ripe, full tannins. The finish is smooth, round and long lasting.
2013 Coro – Mendocino
Coro Mendocino is a collaborative effort started by eight Mendocino winemakers in 2001 to create a class of distinctive wines that showcase the rich heritage and unique characteristics of Mendocino County. This is the first time in U.S. history that vintners have set blending and aging parameters for wines distinctive to a region (i.e. like the appellation controllee wines of Europe). Each winery created its own individual blend based on the protocols and each blend is reviewed by a panel of winemakers in four blind tastings before the wine is accepted as Coro Mendocino. All of the fruit must be exclusively from Mendocino County with a requirement that Zinfandel be at least 40% of the blend. Each winery personalizes the common label, which will be recognizable as Coro Mendocino, and bottles the wine in a uniform bottle. Coro comes from the Latin meaning “from many into one”
Our 2013 Coro Mendocino is a unique blend of old vine Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, and classic Italian grape varieties Barbera, Sangiovese, Dolcetto and Montepulciano, which have come together to create a wine that has greatbstructure and elegance. Aromas of intense plum, blackbcherry, coffee and spice that weave through the fullbodied, complex mouth-feel, culminating in a rich harmonious finish laced with great acidity, vanilla, earth and toasty oak. The wine’s complexity and depth of flavor will continue to evolve with further bottle aging.