The unique character of our 2014 Zinfandel derives from more than four decades of
winemaking expertise combined with the mountain terroir of the historic Monte Rosso
Vineyard and its famous red soils. These 125-year-old Zinfandel vines yield a meager
three-quarter to one ton per acre, in a bountiful year. The distinctive fruit is enhanced by the
mineral-rich, well-drained, decomposed volcanic ash soils and by the cooling breezes of San
Pablo Bay. Most of the grapes come from two single blocks that sit on a precariously steep
western-facing slope of the Mayacamas Mountains. The vineyard’s high elevation exposes the
fruit to additional sunlight, ensuring consistent ripening. The unique vineyard site,
eight-by-eight foot vine spacing, diligent pruning, and dry-farming techniques all combine to
produce the intensely concentrated flavors of Monte Rosso grapes.
The weather during the growing season in 2014 was perfect for wine grapes, largely dry and
warm, but not overly hot. We were fortunate to have had such a great harvest on the heels of
the excellent 2013 vintage. The weather was as good as one could expect. The growing season
began early, with a warm and dry spring, and the weather stayed beautiful all the way through
an early harvest. The quality and quantity of the fruit were exceptional. The grapes were
hand-picked on September 3, 2014.
The nose on this wine opens quickly with big layers of black plum and brambleberry. Swirl the
glass, and you will find the nose developing notes of mocha and cedar under the fruit, with just
a hint of crushed black pepper.
Take a sip and you will find bright red fruit underscored with light caramelized sugar. The
acidity is crisp and lends to the intensity of the fruit, which quickly opens into characters of
summer blackberry and juicy plums. The tannins are rich and full, and carry the palate through
to a finish brimming with toasty vanilla and red licorice.