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Carlisle Papera Ranch Zinfandel 2007

Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
  • WS96
  • RP92
0% ABV
  • WS94
  • RP94
  • WS93
  • RP93
  • WS95
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Winemaker Notes

#20 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2010

Dark ruby-purple, nearly opaque. A compelling, exotic nose of raspberry liqueur, briar, pepper, and incense. Not as floral as Carlisle Vineyard but it's obvious this comes from the same ‘hood. On the palate, full-bodied with explosive flavors of kirsch and black raspberry leading to a long and persistent finish. A wine that manages to be both powerful and graceful at the same time. Easily our best Papera Ranch Zinfandel to date. Enjoy this age-worthy zinfandel from mid-2010 through 2018.

Critical Acclaim

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WS 96
Wine Spectator
A real knockout. Bold and intense, yet complex, with ripe cherry fruit deftly balanced by vibrant acidity. Offers floral aromas with notes of black raspberry, pepper and lingering Asian spice that lead to full but fleshy tannins. Drink now through 2015.
RP 92
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Ripe red and black currants intertwined with heady amounts of raspberry, blueberry, and wild berry fruit characterize the 2007 Zinfandel Papera Ranch, a blend of 93% Zinfandel and 7% mixed black varietals. Pure, spicy, and loaded with flavor, this super Zin should drink well for 5-8 years.
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Carlisle, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
2007 Papera Ranch Zinfandel
Carlisle is a small Sonoma County winery specializing in the production of old-vine, vineyard designated Zinfandels and red Rhone varieties (Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre, and Petite Sirah). They have also recently added their first whites, two blends from historic, old-vine vineyards plus Sonoma County's first ever Grüner Veltliner. While they like their wines to be bold, rich, and intensely flavored, each reflecting a sense of place, its origins in the vineyard, they also strive to create wines of balance, complexity, and perhaps most importantly, pleasure.

Carlisle's goal is always the same - grow and source outstanding fruit, do as little as possible to it, and bottle outstanding, pleasurable wine at the fairest price possible.

Russian River

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A standout region for its decidedly Californian take on Burgundian varieties, The Russian River Valley is named for the eponymous river which flows through the region. While there are warm pockets of the AVA, it is mostly a cool-climate growing region thanks to breezes and fog from the nearby Pacific Ocean.

Chardonnay and Pinot Noir reign supreme in Russian River, with the best examples demonstrating a unique combination of richness and restraint. The cool weather makes Russian River an ideal AVA for sparkling wine production, utilizing the aforementioned varieties. Zinfandel also performs exceptionally well here. Within the Russian River Valley lie the smaller appellations of Chalk Hill and Green Valley. The former, further from the ocean, is relatively warm, with a focus on red and white Bordeaux varieties. The latter is the coolest, foggiest parcel of the Russian River Valley and is responsible for outstanding Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.


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Unapologetically powerful, heady, and fruit-forward, Zinfandel is often thought of as a truly Californian grape, though in fact it is anything but. This variety has followed an intriguing trajectory to reach its adoptive home, beginning, surprisingly, in Croatia. Originally known as Tribidrag, it first made its way to southern Italy where it became known as Primitivo. From there it eventually migrated to what is now unarguably its most successful outpost, in California, and has thrived throughout the state. Of course, this is also the grape of White Zinfandel, a sweet pink wine that enjoyed great popularity in the 1980s and 90s. Though White Zin still has a significant following, today the variety is increasingly associated with the red version.

In the Glass

Zinfandel commonly features a bold, plush texture and notes of dark plum, blackberry, sweet spice, black pepper, dark chocolate, leather, and licorice, and can often be described as “jammy” and a little bit sweet. Very ripe examples may express a hint of dried fruit like raisin, fig, or prune. Despite its significant alcohol and weight, Zinfandel has very smooth, gentle tannins.

Perfect Pairings

Zinfandel is a powerfully flavored wine, mingling happily with bold food like brisket, lamb shanks, pork ribs, or anything barbecued. If care is taken with regards to alcohol levels, Zinfandel’s hint of sweetness can work well with milder Indian-spiced dishes like lamb curry.

Sommelier Secret

Thanks to its popularity both for home winemaking and as communion wine, many Zinfandel vines were able to survive prohibition, leading to the abundance of "old vine" Zinfandels. These low-yielding vines tend to produce wine that is concentrated, complex, and elegant.

PDXTOP10020CA_2007 Item# 107466