2009 Stellwagen Zinfandel

Stellwagen Vineyard Zinfandel

Sonoma Valley

This is the first release for Bedrock Wine Co. from this tiny, famous, vineyard owned by Ruth Stellwagen and Robert Vaughn. It is a great honor for Bedrock Wine Co. to organically farm and receive the fruit from this vineyard.

The ancient vines here, planted around 1890, and probably part of the original Steiger property, lie less than a half-mile north from Bedrock Vineyard. Like most ancient vineyards of this age, the vineyard is about 10% mixed blacks— with lots of Petite Sirah, Syrah, Carignane, a trace of Semillon, and a “mystery vine” that I am determined to identify this year. What is amazing, and a great example of the power of terroir, is how different the soils and climate are. Planted on Los Robles cobbly loams, which have more clay and a distinct brown/grey tone, the vines here typically ripen nearly a month after the vines at Bedrock Vineyard. The fruit tone is more opulent, the aromatics darker and a bit more brooding.

In 2009 we harvested the vineyard in two passes, focusing on small vines with less crop the first time, and on bigger vines with more crop the second. The final wine is an amalgamation of the two, though the later pass represents a slightly larger part of the blend. The wine was fermented in open-top redwood vats using native yeasts, was basket pressed, and then barreled down to 25% new French oak barrels. The wine shows the greatness of both the vineyard and the vintage— large-scaled, aromatically ebullient, and filled with dark, rich, fruit and spice.

180 cases made.

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