Zinfandel, Mickey’s Block, Brown Estate, Chiles Valley, Napa Valley, California, 2011, 15.2% abv.

Oh Mickey, you’re so fine. You’re so fine, you … know the rest.

Meet Mickey. We’ve held onto this Zinfandel wine for a year now to see what a little time in the bottle would do to it.  It’s hard to see how it could become any better.

Zinfandel is the same grape as Primitivo (from Puglia, Italy) and Crljenak Kastelanski (from Croatia). The name Primitivo is said to have happened when a monk noticed these particular vines ripened before the others – hence the meaning, ‘first to ripen’.

This version hails from the hills located directly west of Napa Valley’s Silverado Trail in Chiles Valley.  Zin didn’t start off with the best of reputations in California where it was formerly produced as ‘white zin’, essentially a jug wine (aka plonk), sweet and light pink and made for easy drinking.

This version has nothing to do with the white zins of yore.  This is seriously complex and layered red wine.

The Mickey’s Block is a shade of ruby with a nose of developing medium plus intensity and aromas of deep plum, black cherry, light tar, tobacco, nutmeg, clove and cedar.

The palate is dry with medium plus acidity, medium plus intensity, somewhat high alcohol and body with ripe and velvety tannins.  The flavours mimic the nose offering black cherry, cigar box, tobacco leaf, nutmeg, clove, light black licorice and a long finish.

This is WSET Very Good Plus; beautifully concentrated fruit, well balanced with the alcohol (surprisingly as it’s over 15%) and fully developed complexity.  Drink now; not necessary to age further – the tannins are velvety smooth and the acidity is still strong, but it’s unlikely to improve with further time in the bottle.

This wine is as rare as hen’s teeth. I was only able to get it by visiting the winery in located.  If you can find it, hoard it, eventually drink and enjoy it.

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Pic credit, Mike Woods Photography

About winellama

I love wine...and finally decided to do something about it.
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