2011 La Storia Zinfandel Estate Alexander Valley
 
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4.08 out of 5 stars!
Member Reviews:

***** Wow! Now that is a Zin
What a pleasant experience from the Alexander Valley! I'll save the graphic description - but will let you in that I'm on the hunt for more! The price is right!!!
-- Bob from Derry, NH

***** Lush flavors
Loaded with berries and a smokiness on the finish. Great bargain
-- Marc from Wyncote, PA

***** Delicious Zinfandel
A full-bodied, but supple and refreshing wine. Not sweet or syrupy, but no bitterness or astringency either. Depth of flavor with real varietal character. This is what Zinfandel should taste like. An excellent wine.
-- Peter from Stamford, CT

***** Viva La Storia!
I'm giving this wine 4.5 stars. At less than $20/bottle, this is one outstanding wine. I love the dark cherry and the plum notes. I love the texture, and the finish. The bottle is also quite nice - one that you almost hate to throw away. On the QPR scale, this a 5 all the way. Very pleased with this purchase.
-- Mark from San Antonio, TX

Leo Trentadue's "Old Patch"

It's one of the most storied old-vine parcels on the coast. Just a couple hundred yards from the famed Geyserville Vineyard that the Trentadue family farms for Paul Draper at Ridge Vineyards, rows of ancient head-trained Zinfandel continue to flourish on what was once a stone-strewn riverbed. Some call Leo Trentadue's 117-year-old vineyard Whitten Ranch. Leo just calls it "Old Patch."

Since 2008, winemaker Miro Tcholakov has been on a hot streak. The "Old Patch" Zinfandel bushes, first planted in 1896, stand chest-high. Absent the wire trellising that helps growers manage leaf canopies, these 117-year-old plants march to their own drumbeat -- growing up and out, as they sprawl along the pebbled surface. In torrid summers, the bush plants suffer, unable to protect bunches from sunburn and blistering. But, beginning in 2008, four consecutive cool growing seasons provided a perfect Zinfandel recipe, culminating in 2011 -- the coldest of all. Such good fortune produced one of the most luscious, high-toned, wild-berry Zins the brilliant Tcholakov has ever crafted off of "Old Patch."

"Many people don't fully understand Zinfandel," Miro told us as we swirled this lavish, explosively aromatic, ancient-vine 2011 La Storia Estate in oversized Riedel (a must for this wine!). "Some think that Zin thrives on heat. Actually, the opposite is true."

The lavish red-fruit aromatics of the 2011 Estate were absent any note of heavy-handedness or syrupy overtones, leading to a rich, vibrant, terrifically juicy attack -- powerful, yet perfectly balanced and light on its feet.

Miro continued, "Zinfandel plants dehydrate quickly. Leaf canopies help, but in the really hot summers, the plants never recover. On the other hand, in these really cool years, the old bush plants thrive. The clusters were perfectly clean, full of juice, with no sign at all of shrivel or desiccation. If only every season cooperated as well as it did in 2011!"

One of the secrets of "Old Patch" lies in the substrata. These deep, gravelly soils are poor, but drain extraordinarily well. Some in Sonoma Valley were obliged to wait through the October rains of 2011, as their Zin hadn't yet reached full maturity. As for Leo Trentadue and Miro Tcholakov, the rain didn't matter. Every "Old Patch" cluster was hand-picked at perfect ripeness on September 30th and October 1st.

Deep purple in color with explosive aromas of sweet spice, infused with black cherry, blueberry and fresh plum. The attack is rich and wonderfully juicy, packed with crushed red fruits, high-toned and vibrant -- absent any of the ponderous, dried-out flavors that mar so many Zinfandels these days -- all bracketed by supple, fine wood tannins.


Tasting Notes

2011 La Storia Zinfandel Estate Alexander Valley
"Deepest ruby in color with luscious aromas of sweet spice, black cherry, blueberry and fresh plum. The attack is rich and unusually juicy, packed with crushed red fruits, high-toned and vibrant -- absent any dried-out flavors that mar so many Zinfandels these days -- all bracketed by supple, fine wood tannins. All too quaffable out of the gate, but don't be afraid to lay this one down for 3-5 years. 'Old Patch' could use the rest."
-- WineAccess Travel Log

 

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