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Professional Ratings: 96 International Wine Cellar, 95 Wine & Spirits
Region: Sonoma County, California
Other Info: Boutique Wines
Style: Big & Bold
Item no. 98408
This unique vineyard in Sonoma Valley is an extension of the Oak Hill Organic Farm, owned and operated for many years by the now deceased Otto Teller, a sage octogenarian who employed no pesticides or irrigation. The 110-year-old vines are situated on a gravelly, well-drained hill that receive a full share of summer sun as well as cooling breezes. The crop level is seldom higher than one and a half tons per acre, and this scant tonnage - combined with the ideal growing conditions - produces exceptionally intense, spicy fruit.
A longtime favorite among hard-core Ravenswood fans, the Old Hill vineyard was planted in the 1880`s in the Valley of the Moon, just north of the town of Sonoma. This vineyard is like your most comfortable pair of old shoes - unparalleled. It is wonderfully consistent, from year to year, in its ability to please even the most discriminating palate.
Old Hill Zinfandel is Knockout nose combines sappy black fruits, black pepper and spicy, smoked meats; rather Rhone-like. Silky and sweet in the middle but with terrific flavor definition and cut. This has compellingly intense fruit and a very long, juicy, aromatic aftertaste. Would appear to be an outstanding vintage for this consistently excellent zinfandel bottling.
Deep red. Powerful, deeply scented bouquet combines fresh red fruits, flowers and Indian spices; turns more pungent with air, picking up a candied floral character that carries onto the palate. Very fresh and silky, with tangy red- and blackcurrant flavors enhanced by building spiciness. The finish will not quit. Already very complex but history says that this wine will richly reward patience. Range: 94-96
Otto Teller of Oak Hill Farm purchased 14 acres of abandoned vineyard across Highway 12 in 1981, a planting of mixed blacks that was about 100 years old at the time. He reclaimed the vines and farmed them naturally (without chemicals), sustaining what is the now the oldest vineyard among Ravenswood's vineyard designates. Those vines produced an expansive wine in 2006, stony, firm and powerful. At first it reads as a block of fruit packed into the tense architecture of its tannins. With air, it becomes finer, more supple, as the complex flavors of the varietal blend begin to show. Cellar this for ten years of more; as a California classic, this will grow only more collectible-and delicious-with long bottle age.