2005 Napa Valley Zinfandel
Zinfandel •Conrad Vineyard & Rancho Chimiles Vineyard
California: Napa Valley
What We Say
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Mission Codename: Agent White Under Investigation
Operative: Agent Red
Objective: Verify Agent White’s Love of Bourassa’s Wines
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Bourassa Vineyards
Wine Subject: 2005 Napa Valley Zinfandel
Winemaker: Gary Galleron
California is famous for its big rich and dark Zins. Most people don’t know that the Zinfandel varietal is genetically directly related to the Southern Italian Primitivo grape. Immensely popular, Zinfandel is California’s most widely harvested red varietal. Wines made from the Zinfandel grape have a wide range of flavors and usually have a distinctly spicy nose and pepper flavors. It also generally ages very well.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Ruby red in color with pink edges, luminescent highlights and surprising excellent clarity. Slow thick legs give an indication of the intensity and concentration of flavors.
Smell – Medium to bold intensity fresh ripe fruit flavors of blackberries and cherries, a spicy hint of pepper and balanced oak that evolves to a vanilla and caramel component as it opens up.
Feel – Medium bodied with bright acidity and dry in texture with firm tannins that coat the entire tongue.
Taste – Tart wild blackberries, oak and pepper are nicely balanced on this very drinkable and fresher Zin. A slightly herbaceous quality emerges as it breathes adding to the overall complexity of this wine.
Finish – Long and lingering with flavors of tart fruit, oak and spicy pepper.
Conclusion – This wine is a very drinkable wine (the perfect kind of wine) and is much more bright, youthful and fresh than your typical Zinfandel. Zin fans will find mush to like about this wine, and people who find most California Zins too big and spicy will love the nicely balanced and complex flavors of this wine that are not dominated by spicy pepper.
Agent Red reporting in – transcript as follows:
Ops was concerned… White had been taking the spy plane down to Mexico, not reported in for days at a time and always came back with great wines from Napa Valley’s Bourassa Vineyards. Questions lingered, and even worse Agent Blush was getting suspicious.
I was dispatched to Napa to investigate. I hate these missions, as being a fellow field agent, I know what’s involved in finding great wines. Nobody wants to be second guessed, and we are fighting on the same team against the O.D.S.W. (our arch nemesis Only Drink Supermarket Wines). I had no reason to doubt White’s allegiance – I personally knew of many of the unsung battles we’ve won against O.D.S.W. He was on the front lines, and I can’t think of anyone else I’d rather have there.
Recently White had returned with a cache of great wines from several Napa Valley wineries, and in particular he was raving about some of the latest Zins, Syrahs and blends. Upon my arrival at the winery, I was greeted by our internal asset ‘E’ who quickly pulled me aside and out of the tasting room. He assured me that all was on the up-and-up and said the best way to prove it was to taste the wines.
After doing some barrel tastings and trying the entire flight my fears where allayed, the wine was indeed great, and ‘E’ had said that him and White were simply enjoying some much needed R&R while trying some wine (and tequila). I was most taken by the Zin that ‘E’ had poured. The 2005 Bourassa Vineyards Napa Valley Zinfandel just delicious. Fresh, young, balanced fruit, oak, spice but not overpowering. Its a very ‘drinkable’ wine – and that’s the best kind…
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The location of Bourassa Vineyards can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the Winery Says
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About This Wine:
The 2005 Zinfandel is another gem, wonderfully ripe fruit but not a total fruit bomb, beautifully layered with dark cherry and warm spice notes, a gentle vanilla from the American oak and a hint of hibiscus in the finish.This wine has the perfect balance of Fruit, acidity, and tannins.
This wine pairs well with spicy food and barbeque anything. It has attractive floral notes with rich fleshy blackberry fruit flavors with notes of pepper, anise, and mint to balance the fine finish.
The two vineyards in the Napa Valley, Conrad Vineyards and Rancho Chimiles in Wooden Valley in East Napa were blended to compliment each other. One is hillside and older presenting a fruity wine and the other is a young wilder vine giving more pepper and herbs. A longer time in the barrel was needed to balance all the nuances of this fine drinking wine. Gary Galleron is the Bourassa Vineyards consulting winemaker. In the first wine he has produced for Bourassa Vineyards, Gary Galleron shows his mastery with this classic varietal. With a long history in the Napa Valley, Gary produces wines under his own label and has been winemaker for other wineries including Whitehall Lane, Vineyard 29, Grace Family, Chateau Montelena, S. Anderson, Hartwell and others. Working with Vintner Victor Bourassa, he will oversee winemaking for all of the family’s wine, including the red blends, Harmony3, Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Syrah, Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc and the Primitivo Port.
About The Winery:
The turning point for Vic Bourassa, owner and proprietor of Bourassa Vineyards in the Napa Valley, really occurred over a lunch he had in 1999 with the godfather of California wine, Robert Mondavi. By that time Bourassa, who had moved to the Valley permanently three years before and had entered a second professional career in real estate development, was already a committed home winemaker and the chance talk wine and the wine business with one of the most influential winery figures in the world was to be savored and appreciated.
At some point during that memorable lunch Bourassa uncorked a bottle of his own homemade Napa Valley Pinot Noir and after a few evidently pleasurable sips Mondavi began to encourage the novice winemaker to enter the winemaking field as a professional, not just as an amateur, and it was at that very moment that Bourassa Vineyards was born, though it was not official, from a business perspective until two years later, in 2001.
Appellation: Napa Valley
Sub-Appellation: Conrad Vineyard, Napa Valley; Rancho Chimiles Vineyard, East Napa
Oak: New American Oak
Release Date: February 07, 2007
Time In Oak: 14 Months