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Seghesio Sonoma Zinfandel 2011

Zinfandel from Sonoma County, California
  • WS92
  • CG90
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Winemaker Notes

Spicy, lush black fruit flavors of Alexander Valley. Briary and raspberry flavors are present, along with structure of of cooler Dry Creek Valley. Overall, this is a balanced and elegantly structured Zinfandel.

Critical Acclaim

WS 92
Wine Spectator

An excellent wine from a challenging vintage, with aromas of black cherry and spice opening to rich wild berry, mineral and toasty sage flavors that wrap around a concentrated core of acidity and tannins. Best from 2015 through 2021.

CG 90
Connoisseurs' Guide

By every report and what we have seen in early tastings, 2011 is an uneven vintage, especially as far as red wines are concerned. This extremely well-made working proves that, as always, very good wines await those willing to search, and it hits the varietal mark smartly. It is precise in its focus on ripe berries and briary spice, and it is particularly well-balanced with fine energy and a long, very firm finish. It is still on the tight side and we would argue against hasty drinking, but it is an easy-odds bet to grow and improve for another three to five years.

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Seghesio

Seghesio Family Vineyards

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Seghesio Family Vineyards, , California
Seghesio
Seghesio Family Vineyards was established in 1895 when Italian immigrant and winemaker Edoardo Seghesio planted his first Zinfandel vineyard in what is now Seghesio's Home Ranch Vineyard in Sonoma County's Alexander Valley.

Edoardo and his wife Angela continued to tend their vineyards through Prohibition and were one of approximately 100 wineries to survive that era. Post-prohibition, Seghesio was a key supplier of grapes and bulk wine to large California wineries.

The modern era saw fourth generation family member Ted Seghesio make the first wines under the Seghesio label. Under the leadership and guidance of Ted and his cousin Pete, Seghesio Family Vineyards has become renowned for exceptional Zinfandels and Italian varietals.

In 2011 Seghesio Family Vineyards joined Crimson Wine Group. Today, in addition to Ted as winemaker and Pete as Ambassador, several members of the Seghesio family hold positions, both in the vineyards and winery, including fifth generation family member Ned Neumiller who serves as Seghesio's Grower Relations & Viticulture Manager.

With its fairytale aesthetic, Germanic influence, and strong emphasis on white wines...

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With its fairytale aesthetic, Germanic influence, and strong emphasis on white wines, Alsace is one of France’s most unique viticultural regions. This hotly contested stretch of land on France’s northeastern border has spent much of its existence as German territory, and this is easy to see both in Alsace’s architecture and wine styles. A long, narrow strip running north to south, Alsace is nestled in the rain shadow of the Vosges mountains, making it perhaps the driest region of France. The growing season is long and cool, and autumn humidity facilitates the development of noble rot for the production of late-picked sweet wines Vendange Tardive and Sélection de Grains Nobles. Alsace is divided into two halves—the Haut-Rhin and the Bas-Rhin—the former, at higher elevations, is associated with higher quality and makes up the lower portion of the region.

The best wines of Alsace can be described as aromatic and honeyed, even when completely dry. The region’s “noble” varieties are Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Muscat, and Pinot Gris. Other varieties grown here include Pinot Blanc, Auxerrois, Chasselas, Sylvaner, and Pinot Noir—the only red grape permitted here, responsible for about 10% of production and often used for sparkling rosé known as Crémant d’Alsace. Riesling is Alsace’s main specialty, and historically has always been bone dry to differentiate it from its German counterparts. In its youth, Alsatian Riesling is fresh and floral, developing complex mineral and gunflint character with age. Gewurztraminer is known for its signature spice and lychee aromatics, and is often utilized for late harvest wines. Pinot Gris is prized for its combination of crisp acidity and savory spice as well as ripe stone fruit flavors. Muscat is vinified dry, and tastes of ripe green grapes and fresh rose petal. There are 51 Grand Cru vineyards in Alsace, and only these four noble varieties are permitted within. While most Alsatian wines are bottled varietally, blends of several (often lesser) varieties are commonly labeled as ‘Edelzwicker.’

Riesling

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A regal variety of incredible purity and precision...

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A regal variety of incredible purity and precision, Riesling possesses a remarkable ability to reflect the character of wherever it is grown while still maintaining easily identifiable typicity. This versatile grape can be just as enjoyable dry or sweet, young or old, still or sparkling, and can age longer than nearly any other white variety. Riesling is best known in Germany and Alsace, and is also of great importance in Austria. The variety has also been particularly successful in Australia’s Clare and Eden Valleys, New Zealand, Oregon, Washington, cooler regions of California, and the Finger Lakes in New York.

In the Glass

Riesling is low in alcohol, with high acidity, steely minerality, and stone fruit, spice, citrus, and floral notes. At its ripest it leans towards juicy peach and nectarine, and pineapple, while in cooler climes it is more redolent of meyer lemon, lime, and green apple. With age, Riesling can become truly revelatory, developing unique, complex aromatics, often with a hint of gasoline.

Perfect Pairings

Riesling is very versatile, enjoying the company of sweet-fleshed fish like sole, most Asian food, especially Thai and Vietnamese (bottlings with some residual sugar and low alcohol are the perfect companions for dishes with substantial spice), and freshly shucked oysters. Sweeter styles work well with fruit-based desserts.

Sommelier Secret

It can be difficult to discern the level of sweetness in a Riesling, and German labeling laws do not make things any easier. Look for the world “trocken” to indicate a dry wine, or “halbtrocken” or “feinherb” for off-dry. Some producers will include a helpful sweetness scale on the back label—happily, a growing trend.

YNG409822_2011 Item# 120197

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