Ravenswood Besieged Red
Joel Peterson's full-flavored Zinfandels and other varietals -- "No Wimpy Wines" is the motto of this winery -- have displayed an admirable consistency for decades.
The first vintage of Ravenswood wines: a meager 327 cases of prize-winning Dry Creek Zinfandel. The company was nomadic through the mid-80s, making each vintage in a different winery – wherever Joel could borrow the space, really. The wine was consistently outstanding, but it was hard to find. The Vintners Blend series finally made Ravenswood profitable and they settled down in their own place in Sonoma.
Peterson is now in his fifth decade working with growers throughout California, so it goes without saying that he knows how to source great fruit. He also has the buying power to get what he wants. Considering the copious production levels of these wines, you can count on the bang for the buck they deliver.
Those cyclical ravens were designed by Berkeley artist David Goines.
Winery notice, We know. You’re hip. You’re not the Sonoma County-newbie who asked, “Where are the white Zinfandel vineyards?” But are you so hip to the cult of Zinfandel that you’ve got the Ravenswood logo tattooed on your person? Free wine tasting for life, for those who do — and there are so many of them, believe it or not, the winery throws them an annual party and poetry slam.
TASTING NOTES: A blend of
Petite Sirah, Carignane, Zinfandel, Syrah, Alicante Bouschet, and Barbera.
Dark, rich, full flavors ignite your senses with blackberry, black cherry, and baking spices, resolving into a delicious, smooth, satisfying finish. Full bodied with firm, but fine, tannins. This wine is a limited release around this time of year and will last a few months or so, it is not yet reviewed and probably won’t be.
Primarily sourced from premium Sonoma County vineyards in:
Alexander Valley: Warm with gravelly soils
Dry Creek Valley: Stone-strewn soils with one of the longest winegrowing histories in California
Sonoma Valley: Cooled by north-south winds, a rarity in North Coast growing regions
Russian River Valley: Only a few miles from the Pacific, fog can drop temperatures 35-40 degrees in the evening
Knights Valley: Remote vineyards embraced by Mount St. Helena
Sonoma Mountain: High-altitude, steep-sloped vineyards with well-drained soil.
Enjoy while it lasts.