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Ottimino Ranch Bello 2006

Zinfandel from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
  • W&S92
  • WE90
14.8% ABV
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14.8% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Black cherry and pomegranate aromas are laced with hints of white pepper, Occidental dust, and vanillin spice. The palate entry has gobs of fruit, with cherry, bramble and ripe strawberry at the core. Smooth, round tannins anchor a great depth and concentration of flavor, and the excellent balance makes this Zinfandel a great food wine.

100% Zinfandel

Critical Acclaim

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W&S 92
Wine & Spirits
Rancho Bello is a dry-farmed vineyard on a ridge above Green Valley, a warm spot that matures zin into a juicy textural pleasure. This wine has the cool touch of satin and silk, a weave of pine, strawberry, sweet William and resinous herb. Tannins darken and firm it up, but the fruit keeps pouring out from behind them. Decant this to let the aromas build, then serve it with grilled rack of lamb.
WE 90
Wine Enthusiast
A wildly flavored, tannic and exuberant Zinfandel that showcases the variety’s exotic personality. Dry and full-bodied, it has brambly flavors of blackberries, black currants, licorice, mocha and smoky cedar, liberally sprinkled with dusty Asian spices.
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Ottimino

Ottimino

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Ottimino, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
Close enough to the ocean to benefit from the cooling sea breeze yet high enough to be above the fog on many days, this section of the Russian River Valley Appellation is unsurpassed in yielding award winning Zinfandel wine. Winemaker William Knuttel's 25 years experience along with his creativity and intuition guide him as he transforms fruit from Von Weidlich, Rancho Bello, and Ottimino Vineyards into unparalleled wine.

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.

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.

RAROTTIBELLO_2006 Item# 110892