2009 Old Wave Old Vine Zinfandel
Zinfandel •Casa Santinamaria Vineyard
California: Sonoma Valley
- Final Assessment (formerly our Conclusion)
- Very highly recommended! Today’s terrific 2009 Random Ridge Old Wave Zinfandel comes to us from our dear friend and winemaker,Bill Hawley. In the five years that we’ve been featuring his wines, we have always focused on his Cabernet Sauvignon, his Cabernet Franc or his Cab/Franc blends. When Bill offered us his Old Vine Zinfandel, we leaped at the chance. This wine is a juicy, delicious wine that is bursting with bright red fruit and supported by a delicious backing of earthy flavors. The fruit is juicy and authentic and the brightness makes this wine an especially easy companion for a great meal. We paired ours with Chicago-style deep-dish pizza. The pairing was superb.
Overall, this wine is delicious, juicy, complex and intriguing. It is also a very fun wine to drink and enjoy - on its own or with food.
Dark burgundy hues, with a ruby red edges and a slightly darker core. After swirling the wine, tall, skinny, wine-stained tears move swiftly down the glass.
Lush and dark, with fruit, spice and earthy aromas that absolutely leap from the glass. Juicy blackberry, raspberry and cherry are the primary notes. These sit directly atop sweet brown spice, sandalwood, sweet dried fall leaves, blackberry candy, leather and black pepper.
Initially, juicy and full of fruit. Blackberry, black cherry and dark strawberry fill the palate. These delicious fruits are quickly joined by dry leather, dried fall leaves, sweetwood, dried cranberry and sweet brown spice. At the end, the subtle (but intriguing and delicious) flavor of pencil shavings appears, adding additional intrigue.
Juicy and ultra-long, with red fruit gradually yielding to earthy flavors of dried leaves, spice, minerals and black pepper.
What the Winery Says
And old vine Zinfandel legendary field blend from 100 year old vines from the Casa Santinamaria Vineyard on the western edge of Sonoma Valley near the base of Sonoma Mountain. The vines are head-trained, dry-farmed and spaced 8x8 yielding 1.3 tons of grapes per acre.
About the Winery
Random Ridge produces fine wines from vineyards pioneered by the Hawley family in the Mayacamas mountains of Napa County, California. We produce wines in very limited quantities from vines meticulously maintained to reflect the essence of the soils in which they grow. We are farmers first but will surf anytime anywhere. Our dedication in the vineyards naturally segues into traditional winemaking practices in the cellar. We strive to enable the fruit to develop its inherent Buddha nature to become wine of complexity harmony & passion.
The vineyard’s intense fruit yields a limited production of exceptional wines that are spicy, extracted, and rich. As Bill Hawley says, they are “wines with alti-dude.”
Winemaker/poet/surfer Bill Hawley
Bill began to pioneer Random Ridge in 1980. At the end of a remote fire road at 2400 feet on California’s stunning Mount Veeder, he built a house for his young family with recycled lumber. The next year he cleared and planted a 10-acre vineyard right on the Napa-Sonoma County ridgeline. Today from the home and vineyard the views of Mount Tamalpais and the San Francisco Bay still dazzle the southern horizon and the sun sets over Sonoma Mountain.
From 1982 to 1988, Bill was employed at Carmenet Vineyard as vineyard manager, mentored by the late great Dick Graff. “…as part of my continuing education, Dick arranged for me to travel to Burgundy and Bordeaux for a month in 1986, visiting cutting-edge producers that shaped my wine aesthetic. Then in 1988 Susan and I traveled to New Zealand and I attended the Cool Climate Viticulture Conference, another mind-blowing trip.”
Bill credits his Chalone experience with introducing him to many winemakers that remain great friends.