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Open 7 days a week!
11:00 am to 5:00 pm (April-October) 11:00 am to 4:00 (November-March)
Tours: Seasonal, and by appointment only
Picnic: Yes, but only two tables & benches
Pets: Not in the tasting room, but welcome on the property. Your pets must get along with our wild jack rabbits, lizards & coyotes
Shhh! You're In the Library.
This is the only place you'll find our cellared gems. From decade old Zinfandel's to rare blends, and short runs to oversized bottles from yesteryear, this is your zone.
Every month Toby, our librarian, will select a handful of library items with tasting notes posted below. For more information and pricing, email him at email@example.com, or phone the tasting room toll free 1-800-816-9463 (WINE).
2003 Cabernet Sauvignon
Handal Vineyard, Dry Creek Valley
In early 2003 Dick Handal and Alyce Denier purchased the old Hulen Vineyard, and hired the renowned Ulises Valdez to manage it. We continue to buy grapes from this wonderful little hillside vineyard above West Dry Creek Road. Beginning with the 2003 vintage this wine will be bottled as Handal-Denier Vineyard. We did not bottle the 2002 separately, as it did not attain our standards for vineyard designation.
The Cabernet from this vineyard produces a full-bodied wine with plenty of rich soft tannins, making it both age worthy and approachable in its youth. It has been used in every Victory Reserve blend we have bottled since we began this association. 2003 was a very good year for Cabernet in most of Sonoma County and this Cabernet was the cream of the crop.
The aroma has good intensity, dominated by ripe fruit (cherry, blueberry and cassis) with notes of spice and vanilla. On the palate this Cabernet achieves the elusive combination of power and finesse, the proverbial iron fist in a velvet glove. A moderately sweet, supple entry and rich, but not heavy, middle lead to a long finish with soft tannins and lingering fruit aftertaste. We expect that this wine will continue to fill out, soften and gain finesse for several years to come. Silver medal San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition 2/07
Composition: 100% Cabernet sauvignon Wine analysis: 13.7% alcohol, 3.65 pH. Production: 312 cases. $40.00
2004 Old Vine Zinfandel
100 year old vines! Well, actually 112 years old; the block of vines that produced the fruit for this wine was planted in 1892. This could be the last Zinfandel we bottle with this designation. From both 2005 and 2006 we have blended the Zin from the ancient vines with that from more recent plantings that were grafted using wood from our old vines.
2004 was a warm vintage, and this wine shows it, with aromas of sun baked blackberries, black currant and licorice. It has great complexity, with new aromas at every whiff: dried herbs, chocolate, molasses, hints of tar and prunes. True to form, our 2004 Estate bottled Zinfandel is what the French would call a masculine wine – muscular and structured, big, but not sweet. It is dark, rich and highly concentrated with a good level of acid that keeps the flavors fresh and lively and balances the 15.5% alcohol. The flavors are predominantly of tart cherry and blackberry, and the finish is long and solid without being excessively astringent or hot. This is a very big wine, but, as with all our wines, has balance.
Typical of our Estate Zins, this wine should age well for at least ten years. Our Zinfandel is field blended with small amounts of Durif (aka Petite Sirah), Syrah, Tempranillo, Carignan and Mourvedre, all planted in 1892.
Analysis: 15.5% alcohol, 3.45 pH. Production: 94 cases. $50.00
2003 Old Vine Port
2003 is the eleventh vintage of old vine Port we have produced from our estate vineyard. It is a blend of ten different grape varieties, from blocks planted between 1892 and 1924. All the grapes were harvested together and cold soaked for three days before adding yeast. After a five day fermentation, the grapes were pressed and fortified with high proof brandy to arrest fermentation.
This rich sweet wine with deep ruby color and aromas of blackberries and chocolate is a wonderful after dinner drink, and is a great match with walnuts or rich cheeses (Stilton is my favorite). Very enjoyable now, it does have the structure to age for many years, but will, in time, throw a deposit and need decanting.
Composition: 50% Syrah, 40% Carignan 5% Durif (aka Petite Sirah), 5% combined blend of Grenache, Tempranillo, Mourvedre, Zinfandel, Sangiovese, Grand Noir and Alicante Bouschet. Wine analysis: Alcohol: 19% Residual Sugar: 8.5% Production: 464 cases. $40.00 (500ml)
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