Ridge Vineyards, Proprietary Red, Mazzoni Home Ranch (ATP) 2010

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By C4

Ridge Vineyards Vintage Notes:

51% Carignane, 48% Zinfandel, 1% Petite Sirah

Heavy winter rainfall saturated these gravelly soils, providing abundant water to the deep-rooted old vines. An unseasonably cool summer slowed ripening, but warm weather arrived in late August, and vineyard sampling began in early September; four parcels were picked on the seventeenth, the final two on September 20. Natural yeasts carried out a vigorous fermentation in five-ton open-top tanks. Rapid extraction of color and tannin led to pressing on day five, and uninoculated malolactic progressed slowly in tank. The assembled wine was then racked to barrel, where it finished in June. This year’s selection includes those parcels heavily interplanted with carignane. Sixteen months in american oak barrels has softened tannins, and brought excellent integration. This fine wine will continue to develop over the next seven to nine years.


Giuseppe Mazzoni and his fourteen-year-old brother-in-law, Abramo Trusendi, arrived from Italy in 1898 and went straight to work at the Italian Swiss Colony vineyard cooperative in Asti, California. In 1899, the two managed to acquire hillside acreage nearby overlooking Alexander Valley from the west. By 1910 they had built a winery and begun making wine. Except for the Prohibition years, the Mazzoni family produced wine there until 1978. They were great believers in the contribution each varietal in a field blend could make to the finished wine. Accordingly, their century-old zinfandel is interplanted with carignane, which adds elegance and lively acidity, and petite sirah, which provides spice and depth. The Mazzoni Home Ranch was purchased in 1988 by Niccolo and Flora Oltranti. They have replanted parts of the abandoned hillside, and in some years we will include a small amount from these younger zinfandel vines.

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