PICK of the RACK: Scott Harvey Wines | Vineyard 1869 Zinfandel | Amador County | California | 2008 | $45 | 89 pts

Aromas:  fresh raspberries; graphite.
Character:  dry; fruit-driven; mid-weight; smooth mouth-feel; low tannin; medium acidity; light oak.
Flavors:  red berries; cinammon; vanilla; black pepper; mineral.
Food Pairing:  Creamy, soft cheeses; grilled meats & fish; tomato-based pasta dishes.


Scott Harvey’s newest Vineyard 1869 Zinfandel is a work of delicate beauty.  The fruit used to make this wine was harvested from the oldest documented Zinfandel vineyard in California – planted in 1869, in Amador County, in the heart of California Gold Country and the rolling Sierra Foothills.  The vines in this 140 year-old vineyard are head pruned (not trellised) and aren’t irrigated.  The 2008 vintage sports a clear ruby hue, offering aromas of crushed fresh red raspberries, cherries, and graphite, with ample flavors of the same along with additional touches of vanilla, cinnamon, and black pepper rounding out the palate.  It’s medium-bodied and quite subtle for an Amador Zin (as you might expect given the age of the vines), and is distinguished by remarkable purity.  It’s light on its feet, but deeply flavorful, and lingers over a fine-tuned finish.  The 1869 Zin is elegantly bottled, with a detailed description of the vineyard’s history on the back label.  The wine is a great conversation piece, and a true treat for those interested in the history of California viticulture.

Availability:  Scott produced only 307 cases of this vintage of the Vineyard 1869 Zin , so you’re likely not going to spot it in a wine shop.  You can purchase it at the Scott Harvey Wines quaint tasting room in Sutter Creek, California (Just off Route 49 in Amador County), or by ordering from the winery online at www.scottharveywines.com.

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