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Ravenswood Teldeschi Vineyard Zinfandel 2011

Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
  • CG94
  • W&S93
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Winemaker Notes

Teldeschi Zinfandel's powerful aromas of black cherries, coffee, caramel, and vanilla as well as other sweet dark fruit scents, combine to create the classic character of a great Dry Creek Benchland Zinfandel. Rich flavors of sweet cherry liqueur, vanilla, and smoke lead to a ripe, dense, long, moderately astringent, and bright fruit finish.

Critical Acclaim

CG 94
Connoisseurs' Guide

Ravenswood takes its accustomed place at the head of the class with its collection of single-vineyard offerings from 2011, and, among the many of a very good lot, the Teldeschi bottling wins top honors once again. Leading with a sweetly perfumed nose of dark berries and briar with highlights of stony soil lending it a singular complexity all its own, the wine comes across as serious and even somewhat brooding on the palate, and, while fairly sturdy, it is never severe. It is as deep as or deeper than most Zins we have yet tasted from the vintage, and there is not an ounce of fat to found on its well-muscled frame. It can only improve in the decade to come.

W&S 93
Wine & Spirits

The oldest vines in this Zinfandel, Petite Sirah and Carignane blend date to 1913 and 1919, planted on western-facing slopes of Dry Creek Valley benchland. That western exposure contributes to the sense of ripeness in the wine, but the old vines have sustained freshness in their fruit to keep it balanced. It smells like roasted meats and cherry skin, presenting its earthiness with frisky energy that leaves the mouth feeling clean and tasting good. The lovely richness will meld with slow-smoked beef ribs.

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Ravenswood

Ravenswood

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Ravenswood, , California
Ravenswood
Fueled initially by the inspiration and winemaking skills of Joel Peterson, aided and abetted by his business partner W. Reed Foster, Ravenswood winery has been dedicated to top quality, hand-crafted wine since the first crush in 1976. Every Ravenswood wine carries a unique vintage and vineyard identity in addition to the intense powerful – gothic – character with which the winery has come to be associated.

A key to Ravenswood’s success is our long-standing relationships with over 60 independent grape growers. Vineyards are chosen for their location, age, yield and special flavor characteristics. At Ravenswood, we are devoted to working with growers who share our philosophy about high quality.

Ravenswood Vineyard Designate wines are made employing what winemaker Joel Peterson refers to as “stubborn and impractical” Old World enological practices. Wines are fermented in small wooden tanks using wild, natural yeasts and punched down by hand three to five times per day. The wines are characterized by intense, spicy aromas supported by rich, berry flavors and long, clean finishes.

Santa Lucia Highlands

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Perhaps the most highly regarded appellation within Monterey County...

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Perhaps the most highly regarded appellation within Monterey County, Santa Lucia Highlands AVA benefits from a combination of warm morning sunshine and bracing afternoon breezes. This allows grapes to ripen slowly and fully, resulting in concentrated, flavorful wines that retain their natural acidity. Wineries here do not shy away from innovation, and place a high priority on “green” viticultural practices.

The climatic conditions here are perfectly suited to the production of ripe, rich Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. These Burgundian varieties dominate an overwhelming percentage of plantings, though growers have also found success with Syrah, Riesling, and Pinot Gris.

Chardonnay

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One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes...

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One of the most popular and versatile white wine grapes, Chardonnay offers a wide range of flavors and styles depending on where it’s grown and how it’s made. In Burgundy, Chardonnay produces some of the finest white wines in the world, typically tending towards minimal intervention in the winery and at its best resulting in remarkable longevity. This grape is popular throughout the world, but perhaps its second most important home is in California, where both oaky, buttery styles and leaner, European-inspired wines enjoy great popularity. Oregon, Australia, South America, South Africa, and New Zealand are also significant producers of Chardonnay.

In the Glass

When planted on cool sites, Chardonnay’s flavors tend towards grapefruit, green apple, minerals, and white stone fruit, while warmer locations coax out richer, more tropical flavors of fig, melon, and pineapple. Oak can add notes of vanilla, coconut, and spice (as well as texture), while malolactic fermentation can impart soft, buttery acidity.

Perfect Pairings

Chardonnay is as versatile at the table as it is in the vineyard. The crisp, clean, Chablis-like styles go well with simple seafood, light chicken dishes, and salads. Richer Chardonnays marry well with cream or oil-based sauces.

Sommelier Secret

Since the 1990s, big, oaky, buttery Chardonnays from California have enjoyed explosive popularity. More recently, the pendulum has begun to swing in the opposite direction, towards a clean, crisp style that rarely utilizes new oak. These Old-World style wines have been dubbed the “New California Chardonnays,” and anyone who claims they do not like Chardonnay should give them a try.

HOR207356_2011 Item# 125825

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