Ravenswood Big River Zinfandel 2007
This wine has always seemed to have a bit more flesh on its bones than most of its mates, and it does again in this vintage. Its ripe blackberry and minerally, soil nuances in its aromas are repeated in flavors that are carried across the palate by the wine's supple, somewhat fleshy texture, and if balancing acidity is never far from the scene, so too is a bit of viscosity not to be missed. Firm but not stiff at the end, this one promises to smooth out with three or four years in bottle.
Deep ruby. Expansive aromas of cassis, cherry compote, black olive and minerals remind me a lot of the Rhone. Fleshy red and dark berry flavors are complicated by floral pastille and cola qualities and betray no rough edges. Alluringly sappy and pure, with excellent finishing clarity and sweet persistence. For a zin, this is almost shockingly graceful. Rating: 92-93
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Responsible for the vast majority of American wine production...
Responsible for the vast majority of American wine production, if California were a country, it would be the world’s fourth largest wine-producing nation. The state’s diverse terrain and microclimates allow for an incredibly wide-ranging selection of wine styles, and unlike tradition-bound Europe, experimentation is more than welcome here. Wineries range from boutique to massive corporations, and price and quality are equally varied—plenty of inexpensive bulk wine is made in the Central Coast area, while Napa is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious and expensive “cult” wines.
Just about every style of wine you can imagine is made in California, from bone dry to unctuously sweet, still to sparkling, light and fresh to rich and full-bodied. Each AVA and sub-AVA has its own distinct personality. In the Napa Valley, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and other Bordeaux varieties dominate, as well as Sauvignon Blanc. Sonoma County is best known for Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Zinfandel. The Central Coast has carved out a niche with Rhône blends based on Grenache and Syrah, while Mendocino has found success with Alsatian varieties such as Riesling and Gewürztraminer. With all the diversity that California has to offer, it is certain that any wine lover will find something to get excited about.