Ruby-red. Pungent, musky, perfumed nose combines stone and berry fruits, violet and black pepper. Even more exotically ripe in the mouth than the above; dense, generous and full. Sound acids and firm-edged, even tannins give the wine lovely snap. Big and muscular, but racy and firm. This is light years ahead of bottles I've tasted of the '96. (ST)
Paul Draper continues to label this bottling without a varietal designation—as he has since 1993—despite this vintage’s 80% Zinfandel. A dark, briary wine, this has plenty of everything you want in a Zin: berry fruit, mild acidity and a decent lashing of oak. Purely delicious, and Ridge’s best Lytton Springs of the past five years. (JC)
Made from a blend of 80% Zinfandel, 15% Petite Sirah, 2% Carignan, 2% Mataro, and 1% Grenache, the 1997 Lytton Springs Proprietary Red Wine (14.9% alcohol) exhibits a saturated purple color in addition to sumptuous aromas of truffles, licorice, loamy soil, blackberry liqueur, and cherries. There are layers of concentration, sweet glycerin in the mid-palate, and a blockbuster, concentrated, opulently-textured finish. (RP)
Another stunning wine (like the 1997 Geyserville). Strawberry, super-ripe (bit not overripe) nose. Just slightly dry tannins for the moment but this has fabulous and sumptuous richness. Very complete wine by any measure. 19/20 points
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2013 Solomon Hills "Solomon Hills Vineyard" Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay (Previously $40)