Napa Cellars Zinfandel 2017
September 8–29, 2017
T.A.: 0.58 g / 100ml
17 months, 28% new oak (75% French, 25% American)
Our 2017 Zinfandel boasts bright aromas of fresh plum, dark cherry, dark brambly fruit such as boysenberry and blackberry with hints of spice, gingerbread, clove and mocha. On the palate, intense flavors of cherry, plum, boysenberry and lingering toasted notes are threaded with hints of gingerbread. This wine is weighty andjuicy with balanced acidity accenting soft and supple tannins. Winemaker Joe Shirley recommends pairing this wine with chicken cacciatore or a well-seasoned steak topped with fresh basil.
Grapes for the Napa Cellars 2017 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 cold soak designed to extract color from the skins, the grapes were pressed early to avoid extracting harsh tannins. Following a 12 to 18-day maceration period and fermented with the délestage method, the lots were aged in 28% new French and American oak barrels for 17 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.
The 2017 growing season offered superlative growing conditions with abundant rain at the beginning of the year. Harvest brought lower yields with fruit of excellent quality.