Ridge Lytton Springs 2009 Front Label
Ridge Lytton Springs 2009 Front LabelRidge Lytton Springs 2009  Front Bottle Shot

Ridge Lytton Springs 2009

  • CG96
  • RP95
  • W&S92
  • WS90
750ML / 14.5% ABV
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4.1 7 Ratings
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4.1 7 Ratings
750ML / 14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Ripe black cherry/raspberry nose, with notes of pepper, licorice, chaparral, and tobacco. Rich black fruit on the palate. Full and viscous. Well-coated tannins and a long, layered finish.

Critical Acclaim

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CG 96
Connoisseurs' Guide
This winery's mastery of Zinfandel is once again evident here, and, if showing the richness and depth that we anticipate from Lytton Springs bottlings, this wine is keenly composed and comes with a little more polish than usual. It is young, it is incisively fruity and it is well-filled, and it forgoes bombast and flashiness for structured precision and great ageability.
RP 95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2009 Lytton Springs is the biggest and most structured of these 2009 Zinfandel-based reds, largely owing to the earthier soils and the presence 23% Petite Sirah. Black fruit, plums, tar, licorice and smoke are some of the notes that flow from this generous, inviting red. The Lytton Springs is fairly structured, and can definitely benefit from another year or two (perhaps more) in bottle. The blend is 74% Zinfandel, 21% Petite Sirah and 5% Carignane. Anticipated maturity: 2013-2029.
W&S 92
Wine & Spirits
Johny Olney considers 2009 to be the best vintage from this historic vineyard since 2005. This release includes 23 percent petite sirah and six percent carignane, so it's not labeled as zinfandel. The blend balances tannic complexity from old-vine fruit with the richer, brighter notes of young-vine zin. The younger fruit fills out the texture without diminishing the tension and edginess of the wine. It's black, smoky and subtle, a red to decant now with grilled sirloin or to cellar for ten years.
WS 90
Wine Spectator
Briary and a bit untamed, but appealing for its cherry and dill aromas and well-structured wild berry, underbrush and cedar flavors. Zinfandel, Petite Sirah and Carignane. Drink now through 2017.
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Ridge

Ridge

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Ridge, California
Ridge Ridge Winery Video

Ridge's history begins in 1885, when Osea Perrone, a doctor and prominent member of San Francisco's Italian community, bought 180 acres near the top of Monte Bello Ridge in the Santa Cruz Mountains. He planted vineyards and constructed a winery of redwood and native limestone in time to produce the first vintage of Monte Bello in 1892. The historic building now serves as the Ridge production facility.

Though Ridge began as a Cabernet winery, by the mid-60s, it had produced several Zinfandels including the Geyserville. In 1972, Lytton Springs joined the line-up and the two came to represent an important part of Ridge production. Known primarily for its red wines, Ridge has also made limited amounts of Chardonnay since 1962.

The Ridge approach is straightforward: find the most intense and flavorful grapes, guide the natural process, draw all the fruit's richness into the wine. Decisions on when to pick, when to press, when to rack, what varietals and what parcels to include and when to bottle, are based on taste. To retain the nuances that increase complexity, Ridge winemakers handle the grapes and wine as gently as possible. There are no recipes, only attention and sensitivity.

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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.

Sonoma County wines are produced with carefully selected grape varieties 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 red wines like 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.

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With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended red wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World, experimentation is permitted and encouraged resulting in a wide variety of red wine styles. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a red wine blend variety that creates a fruity and full-bodied wine would do well combined with one that is naturally high in acidity and tannins. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.

How to Serve Red Wine

A common piece of advice is to serve red wine at “room temperature,” but this suggestion is imprecise. After all, room temperature in January is likely to be quite different than in August, even considering the possible effect of central heating and air conditioning systems. The proper temperature to aim for is 55° F to 60° F for lighter-bodied reds and 60° F to 65° F for fuller-bodied wines. How much does this matter?

How Long Does Red Wine Last?

Once opened and re-corked, a bottle stored in a cool, dark environment (like your fridge) will stay fresh and nicely drinkable for a day or two. There are products available that can extend that period by a couple of days. As for unopened bottles, optimal storage means keeping them on their sides in a moderately humid environment at about 57° F. Red wines stored in this manner will stay good – and possibly improve – for anywhere from one year to multiple decades. Assessing how long to hold on to a bottle is a complicated science. If you are planning long-term storage of your reds, seek the advice of a wine professional.

SOU246339_2009 Item# 112081

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