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Kendall-Jackson Great Estates Mendocino Zinfandel 2000

Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
  • WE91
0% ABV
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Winemaker Notes

The 2000 growing season started off with a mild but wet winter. Record heat waves in May and June reduced berry size and added potency to the flavors. The remainder of the summer brought cooler weather with heat spikes near harvest. The sudden heat finally ripened the fruit while creating a new challene: berries that were just starting to shrivel at their peak of ripeness, concentrating the flavors even more. The end result was a vintage with long hang times, bringing both power and finesse to the carefully picked fruit. WINEMAKING: Grapes from old vines deserve a gentle crush, followed by a cold soak, warm fermentation and minimal maceration on the skins lasting 12 days in all. This extra care allowed this Zinfandel to develop deep color, rich aromatics and soft tannins. The freshly pressed wine was racked into small French and American oak barrels, where it aged for 10 months. This wine includes small amounts of Petite Sirah, Grenache and Carignane, typical complements to Zinfandel, which adds a dash of complexity and interest to a true old vine Zinfandel. This wine shows extraordinary white and black pepper, spice and plenty of blackberry and raspberry jam with a long, voluptuous finish.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 91
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Kendall-Jackson

Kendall-Jackson

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Kendall-Jackson, Sonoma County, California
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Back in 1974, Jess Jackson saw in the fine vineyards of California's cool coastal regions fruit with a variety of outstanding flavors. What if there was a way to produce from this abundance, a single outstanding "cuvée" that offered both quality and value? The result, first released in 1983, was Vintner's Reserve Chardonnay, a rich, round and flavorful wine, made with hand-crafted methods. That same year, Grand Reserve was introduced, a line of ultra-premium wines that represented the full potential of California's finest vineyards and winemaking.

Today, over 5,000 acres of vineyard in California's coastal regions are farmed by Kendall-Jackson. Four separate wineries house what is possibly the single largest barrel-fermentation project in the world. But perhaps most important, is that Kendall-Jackson remains a family-owned winery.

Sonoma County

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Home to a diverse array of smaller AVAs with varied microclimates and soil types, Sonoma County has something for every wine lover. Physically twice as large as Napa Valley, the region only produces about half the amount of wine but boasts both tremendous quality and variety. With its laid-back atmosphere and down-to-earth attitude, the wineries of Sonoma are appreciated by wine tourists for their friendliness and approachability. The entire county intends to become a 100% sustainable winegrowing region by 2019.

Grape varieties are carefully selected to reflect the best attributes of their sites—Dry Creek Valley’s consistent sunshine is ideal for Zinfandel, while the warm Alexander Valley is responsible for rich, voluptuous Cabernet Sauvignon. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are important throughout the county, most notably in the cooler AVAs of Russian River, Sonoma Coast and Carneros. Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah have also found a firm footing here.

Zinfandel

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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.

PAR108072_2000 Item# 53489