Our estate Margarita Vineyard has become renowned for producing one of the Paso Robles region’s most acclaimed Zinfandels. Here, the Zinfandel grape achieves a rare balance of robust flavors and elegant structure. Zinfandel has been a cornerstone varietal of Paso Robles for more than 100 years, and we are proud to feature it in our small family of wines.
The 2012 offers fresh aromas of raspberry jam and dried cherry with notes of white pepper and cocoa. Supple, rounded flavors of briary blackberry, cherry and cedar unfold with trailing vanilla accents. A savory spiciness lingers on a smooth, refined finish.
The 2012 Zinfandel is a blend of three separate blocks grown in three distinct soil types at Margarita Vineyard. Fruit from the volcanic soils of Block 32 brings a core of varietal spiciness to the wine, while a contribution from the shale soils of Block 49 adds a layer of dark, ripe fruit. Lastly, the cooler climes and alluvial soils of Block 39 bring enhanced structure and backbone. Margarita Vineyard stands alone as the southernmost vineyard in the Paso Robles AVA, nestled into the rugged Santa Lucia Mountain Range just 14 miles from the Pacific Ocean. The mountains tower over the property’s western flank, testaments to the tectonic forces that blessed Margarita Vineyard with a rare diversity of soils. The peaks also act as a gateway between the cool marine air to the south and warm inland conditions to the north. This phenomenon creates one of the coolest growing environments in the Paso Robles region, resulting in fruit of uncommon depth and structure.
Our goal is to produce a Zinfandel that exhibits evenness with a pure varietal character that is rooted in the growing conditions at Margarita Vineyard. Toward this end, we picked the different blocks in a range of 23 to 25 Brix, seeking both ripeness and restraint. Prior to fermentation, the lots were cold soaked for 48 hours for a soft extraction of flavor and color. Pumpovers were employed three times per day in the earlier stages of fermentation for balanced extraction, then dialed back to ensure richness without astringency. After light pressing, the individual lots were racked to a combination of French (40%) and American (60%) oak barrels (comprised of 20% new oak), where they aged for 17 months prior to blending and bottling. A small lot of Petite Sirah was incorporated into the final blend for enhanced intensity and structure.
Food Pairing Notes
The 2012 Zinfandel’s full-bodied yet elegant style is an appealing match for oak-grilled pizza, rack of lamb, smoked chicken and peppercorn steak.
91% Zinfandel & 9% Petite Sirah