Frank Family winemaker Todd Graff

Ravenswood Dickerson Zinfandel 2013

Ravenswood Dickerson Zinfandel 2013: Opaque ruby-garnet color; red cherry, black raspberry with few petals of dried rose on the nose; raspberry, cherry, plum, chocolate, mint, eucalyptus on the palate. This is elegant zin with lodes of zesty young fruit coming from vines that are more than 80 years old; minerality, strikingly good acidity for zin (3.54 pH), balanced, lovely supple layers of flavor, clean, round, bright, plush, medium weight in the mouth, some oak sweetness artfully integrated into the whole; 14.9% alcohol that remarkably does not come across as hot in any way. Delicious easy drinker, at same time a serious, superbly crafted red wine. Ravenswood is a superior maker of California zin. It is now part of Constellation Brands, the world’s largest winemaker, but as Constellation consistently and admirably does, they left the founder and longtime winemaker Joel Peterson in charge. To his credit, Peterson never bought into the 1990s super-ripe, ridiculously high alcohol oak monster zins then in vogue. Peterson’s wines consistently are brighter, fresher, more interesting than those cartoon character efforts—and he has been vindicated as many California makers have pulled back and admitted their zin sins, turning away from alcohol syrup pretending to be serious wine. Peterson must have a wry smile on his face: “told you so.” 2013 was good year in Napa, and this elegant effort reflects what nice things can happen when the wine gods smile and the winemaker gets out of the way and allows the land and the grapes to speak. Zin with finesse and grace, bravo. $37
Ravenswood Dickerson Zinfandel