Here’s another great V. Sattui from the depths of the closet in the spare room. This Zinfandel is from the Gilsson Vineyard in the Russian River Valley whose climate is much cooler than other vineyards in the wine country thanks to the fog that rolls in from the Pacific ocean, making it a great place to grow Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays. Those wines from this region are well known and appreciated, but perhaps a more surprising success in these cooler climes is Zinfandel.
According to the Russian River Valley Winegrowers, Zinfandel is planted across California, but in the Russian River Valley some new vines have been joined with vines planted as long ago as the 1800s. They say:
Our long, cool growing season allows Zinfandel to achieve superb levels of ripeness. Russian River Valley Zinfandel explodes with aromas of peak-of-season ripe blackberries and boysenberries, intermingled with plum and occasionally blueberry. Overtones of black pepper are also quite common. These wines maintain excellent levels of balance, appealing to both the hedonist and the classic wine drinker.
This 2009 Zin has an ABV of 15% and retails for $37. It has a clear dark garnet color in the glass with aromas of ripe red fruits and strawberries. It is medium sweet with a medium full body and a low amount of soft tannins making it very drinkable, but not wimpy. It is well balanced and masterful in the mouth with lots of ripe fruit and vanilla. What you get on the nose, you get in the mouth too which is very satisfying. The flavor was well rounded and the finish was short, but had some alcohol warmth which was very pleasant.
For those of you wanting an expert opinion, my grandma described it as, “A nice zin.” So there you go.
We didn’t enjoy this with a meal, just on its own with a piece of bread and it was lovely. It’s another great example of really good Californian wine, full of fruit, vanilla and sex appeal. If I were a sommelier or had any real knowledge of wine I would probably be able to pick up on the nuances that the cool climate brings to this Zinfandel, but maybe you should just buy a bottle and see for yourself. I think you’ll be pleased.