Dry Creek Valley
Adel’s Vineyard-Dry Creek Valley-Sonoma County
As you enter Dry Creek Valley from Highway 101 there is a large Italianate home on your right with the entire front yard planted in vines. This is Adel’s vineyard, tiny as vineyards go, less than ½ acre and planted with 100% Zinfandel.
Since this entire valley is carpeted with the vines that make the finest Zinfandel in the world you could miss this one. It was brought to our attention by Zuriel Bernier who is the vineyard manager and a member of the locally esteemed Bernier family of grape and produce growers and vineyard managers. The combination of Zuriel’s skill and the extraordinary fruit make this a consistently excellent wine.
Adel’s Vineyard as seen from Dry Creek Road
Carreras Ranch-Block 2-Dry Creek Valley-Sonoma County
Joe Ramazzotti moved here in 1958 after his aunt, Linda Chioti, visited her brother and his family in Italy and persuaded them to join her in California. She had a 50 acre ranch on Dry Creek Road, no children and plenty of room for a growing family. Joe was 8 years old and that’s when he started farming.
For the last 25 years he has been managing the Carreras ranch, 25 acres of which is planted in an Italian field blend of Zinfandel, Alicante Bouchet, Petite Sirah, Napa Gamay and Chasselas Dore’. Joe’s fruit goes to some pretty prestigious wineries such as Ferrari-Carano, Wilson, Flowers, Kendall Jackson, Rodney Strong and Wine Guerrilla.
Joe talked with us about the upcoming harvest. The vines this year look extraordinary, with huge clusters of fat, deep purple fruit. Zinfandel ripens unevenly with ripe, overripe and under ripe grapes all in the same cluster. Therefore it must be picked at a precise moment when the brix are at 25. During the crush the over ripe grapes will release their sugars bringing it up to 27 which is as high as you want to go.
Paired with the grins of the growers…finally a truly bountiful harvest…you will see the crossed fingers that say ‘Pleeeeeze, 2 or 3 more weeks with no rain.’
Joe with ‘Block 2′ old vine Zinfandel
Forchini Vineyards ‘old vine’ -Dry Creek Valley-Sonoma County
This 100 year old vineyard has always been dry farmed producing a highly concentrated flavor in the grapes. 14 acres is devoted to a field blend of primarily head pruned Zinfandel with a smattering of Alicante Bouchet and Petite Sirah. The remaining 3 acres is planted in 100% Carignane.
We share the bounty with Amphora, Ledson, Lambert Bridge and Sutter Home.