Our Dry Creek estate-grown Federalist Zinfandel is hand-crafted to bring out the true individuality of the Zinfandel grape. The Dry Creek Valley has unique characteristics that make it especially well-suited for cultivation of this hearty, decidedly American grape. The valley receives pronounced afternoon heat, but our vines are also cooled by the night air that creeps up the Russian River Valley from the waters of the Pacific Ocean, producing evening and early morning fog. Our vineyard enjoys the luxury of extended "hang time," which produces more mature fruit, and results in rich, full-bodied flavor characteristics. The Federalist Zinfandel has robust fruit with bright berry fruit character, and its lively acidity allows it to partner well with a wide variety of foods.
The Federalist will donate a portion of the proceeds to the VFW Foundation's Return the Favor program which provides financial assistance for families of deployed troops and prepaid phone cards for soldiers deployed overseas.
The Federalist Winery
The roots of Zinfandel began to take hold in the United States just as the Federalists were establishing our nation’s independence. This Dry Creek Valley estate-grown Federalist Zinfandel is an ode to this noble grape, and a celebration of its decidedly American origin. The robust fruit, bright berry fruit character and lively acidity speak to the distinct characteristics of these bold, strong vines that are inseparably intertwined with the history of the United States itself.
The Federalist's vineyards are located in Sonoma County, California. Owned and managed by the Terlato Family, they have positioned the winery to produce single vineyard and estate wines with a focus on Zinfandel. The Federalist is sourced from 100% estate grown new vines on the estate.
The Federalist's packaging features the leader and most famous Federalist in American history, Alexander Hamilton. The Federalists believed in strong national government, supported modernizing, manufacturing & industrial development, and the use of a tariff to fund the Treasury. They supported a national Bank of the United States, and funding national and state debts incurred during the Revolutionary War. In foreign affairs the Federalists opposed the French Revolution, and sought a strong army and navy. A few other noted Federalists were: James Madison (VA), John Jay (NY), George Washington (VA), and John Adams (MA).
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Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about half as much wine as its northeasterly neighbor. Because of its vast size, however, Sonoma is able to achieve far more diversity within its borders, which include sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid-back and down-to-earth, but the wines are serious and well-made, ranging in style from subtle and elegant to rich and powerful. Grape varieties are more varied here, from Pinot Noir and Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay.
The largest sub-AVAs of Sonoma include Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Each sub-AVA, with its own micro-climate, is unique in its grape varieties and styles of wine. Dry Creek makes a mean Zinfandel while Russian River produces stand up Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Alexander Valley makes some of the better Cabernet Sauvignons in the county and Sonoma Valley creates excellent wines from all the above varieties. Other grapes found throughout Sonoma include Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah.
It's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country unto itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
Most wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.