Ridge Lytton Springs (375ML half-bottle) 2014 Front Label
Ridge Lytton Springs (375ML half-bottle) 2014 Front Label

Ridge Lytton Springs (375ML half-bottle) 2014

  • WW96
  • RP91
375ML / 14.4% ABV
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375ML / 14.4% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Deep purple color. Appealing aromas of black pepper, cassis, and licorice. Layered plum, blackberry fruit on the palate; medium/full-bodied, with silky tannins. Notes of chapparal and mocha on the finish.
Blend: 69% Zinfandel, 18% Petite Sirah, 11% Carignane, 2% Mataro (Mourvedre)

Critical Acclaim

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WW 96
Wilfred Wong of Wine.com
Dollar for dollar in the world of ultra-premium red wines, the Ridge Lytton Springs stands tall as one of the greatest red wine values. I recall tasting the 1973 and 1974 vintages at the winery with winemaker Paul Draper as the '74 was being released, more than 40 years ago; I was incredibly impressed. As the years marched on, I re-tasted both of those wines and was amazed at how well they aged through the decades. While I was confident early on those wines would do well with cellaring, I was still impressed with the complexities they exhibited bottle age. The 2014 Ridge Lytton Springs—comprised of mostly Zinfandel, some Petite Sirah, and Carignane, and a little bit of Mataro (Mourvèdre)—looks to be one of the winery's best efforts to date. The wine exhibits superb structure and is very concentrated with bright berries—ranging from raspberries to blueberries—and lightly savory with sweet spices and dried earth. Drinks young now. (Tasted: September 17, 2016, San Francisco, CA) (Tasted: September 16, 2016, San Francisco, CA)
RP 91
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
More fresh and elegant than the Geyserville, with a touch more focus, the 2014 Lytton Springs is another beautiful wine from this estate. Made from 69% Zinfandel, 18% Petite Sirah and the rest Carignan and Mourvèdre, aged in 20% new American oak, it boasts fabulous notes of plums, blackberry jam, toasted spice and licorice as well as medium to full-bodied richness, beautiful mid-palate depth and notable tannin. The Geyserville is a touch sexier, but this will be longer lived. Give bottles 2-3 years of cellaring and enjoy over the following decade or more. 91+
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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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A multifaceted and highly reputable sub-region of Sonoma, Dry Creek Valley is responsible for a wide range of wine styles—both red and white. One of the smallest AVAs in California, Dry Creek Valley has a winning combination of ideal geography and climate. Fertile, well-drained soils create concentrated varietal character while long, warm days, bookended by cool nights, allow grapes to reach full phenolic ripeness and balance. The warm and welcoming appellation is home to a number of family-owned vineyards and wineries that place a strong emphasis on sustainable farming practices.

Zinfandel reigns supreme here and still produces in a great number of very old vineyards—often 100 years old or older. These old vines create a powerful, voluptuous and sultry wine unlike those of any other region. Sauvignon Blanc, the valley’s signature white grape, also performs exceptionally well. Many other varieties grow comfortably here, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache and Syrah. Petite Sirah is often found in blends with Zinfandel.

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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 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. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a 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.

WLD946647_2014 Item# 163727

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