This wine is a field blend of two-thirds Zinfandel, slightly less than one-third Carignan, and a tiny dram of Petite Sirah. The vines were planted in the late nineteenth century and are non-irrigated. Mazzoni’s four vineyard blocks were picked successively in this 2009 vintage and separately vinified, with the final bottling deriving from sites with high concentrations of Zinfandel. This wine, about 1,150 cases’ worth, was bottled in May 2011.
The winemaker suggested it would hit a sweet spot right around now. It has, or at least is in the process of hitting it. Its robe of youthful charm has fallen away, revealing an armature of mature fruit drenched in tea-like savoriness. The tannins are modest and remarkably little oxidation still, just a glimmering shadow of bouillon or hide. What’s here is mostly fruity, with a luster of black and red currants and flavors (but not aromas) of allspice and cinnamon, both characteristic of dry-farmed, old-vine Zin.
This wine is nice now, equally great with pork, game, chicken, duck, rare beef, but I’ll extend the winemaker’s prognostications by another five years.
14.6% abv | about $30