Napa Cellars Zinfandel 2015
August 28–September 22, 2016
T.A.: 0.60 g / 100ml
19 months, 34% new oak (91% French, 9% American)
The Napa Cellars 2015 Zinfandel boasts bright aromas of fresh berry compote, black cherry, plum, sweet vanilla smoke, hints of clove and star anise. The aromas lead to lush flavors of raspberry, blackberry, tart cherry, and bits of baking spice finished with complex flavors of rum-soaked fruit. This wine is weighty with juicy tannins and bright acidity helping make the red fruit notes pop. Winemaker Joe Shirley recommends pairing this wine with chicken cacciatore or a well-seasoned steak topped with fresh basil.
Grapes for the Napa Cellars 2015 Zinfandel are hand-selected from vineyards in the warmer areas of Napa Valley, including St. Helena, Yountville, Oak Knoll and Calistoga. Zinfandel grows best in warmer climates, and sourcing grapes from these areas results in complex and concentrated fruit. Zinfandel is not nearly as ubiquitous as Cabernet Sauvignon in Napa Valley, and makes up roughly 2% of total acreage.
After a three day cold soak designed to extract color from the skins, the grapes are pressed early to avoid extracting harsh tannins. Following a maceration period lasting from 10-14 days, the lots are aged in 34% new French and American oak barrels for 19 months. The partial use of new oak helps preserve the big Zinfandel flavors, while still imparting warm, spicy characteristics to create an elegant and balanced wine.