Taking a last look at 2006 Zinfandel

Taking a last look at 2006 Zinfandel


As the shelves see their first 2008 Zinfandels, and are quickly filling with many 2007’s, I thought it was time to take another look at 2006, a vintage with a reputation, not all of it good.

2006 was a difficult vintage in much of Northern California that saw a cool and damp spring make rot an issue early in the season. The  July heat wave that followed further stressed the vines, yet cooler temperatures returned for the end of the season, accompanied by more rains and more rot. It was a vintage that required considerable work in the vineyards, but also offered those who were diligent and patient good weather during harvest, and a small crop of healthy grapes.

Alexander Valley Vineyards

One of three great Zinfandels from this pioneering producer. I'll be reviewing the rest tomorrow so check back for information on Sin Zin and Temptation.

2006 Alexander Valley Vineyards Redemption Dry Creek Valley 14.5%
Black raspberry jam on dry toast greets the nose, tight with black fruit and spice notes slowly unfurling with a touch of apricot jam and a nice brambly top note.  There’s a little vanilla and spice box but it’s well integrated and in balance.

Paso Robles Biker

Four Vines consistenly produces some big, brawny wines, yet they always behave at the table, the Biker is no exception.

2006 Four Vines Biker Paso Robles 15%

This is pretty big in the mouth with a lot of power, and big, furry tannins,  yet it retains freshening acidity. There are masses of dark, slightly confected fruit with touches of molasses, mocha and spice adding focus and give the wine a bit of form.

Wine Guerrilla

A relatively new producer specializing in Sonoma County Zinfandel. Read more about their great line up of 2007's Zinfandels next week.

2006 Wine Guerrilla Two Vineyards Dry Creek Valley 14.6%

Red fruit, tar and licorice on the nose, with an underlying sweet raspberry tone and nice earthy spiciness all in balance.  Soft tannins and good acidity in a relatively medium weight frame help support nice wild raspberry and wild cherry fruit.

To see all the 2006 Zinfandels I've reviewed this year click here. Stay tuned for a focus on the 2007 Wine Guerrilla line up that will be sent out tomorrow.

Mentioned in this article


  • Snooth User: Mark Angelillo
    Founding Member Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    2 5,324

    I really enjoyed the Temptation Zin. I'm looking forward to trying some of the other offerings from Alexander Valley Vineyards.

    Sep 09, 2009 at 5:06 PM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 238,749

    More information about this pioneering Alexander Valley winery is now available, including reviews of 2007 Sin Zin and 2006 Redemption Zinfandel. The article is listed under Winery Profiles.

    Sep 10, 2009 at 8:14 AM

  • Snooth User: ATootsie
    38376 70

    I know you taste alot af Wines and do alot of revieves but Have you ever tried the Dark Horse Trebource Zin or the DeRose Zin? Curious to hear your opinion!

    Sep 11, 2009 at 2:19 PM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 238,749

    Hi ATootsie,

    I have tried either of the wines you mention. I look forward to trying them someday.

    Sep 13, 2009 at 9:51 AM

  • Turley Vineyards Zinfandel - Try any of them, they were all great!

    Sep 17, 2009 at 1:00 PM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 238,749

    Turley does some impressive work. I haven't tried any of their 06's but I'll keep an eye for them.

    Sep 18, 2009 at 7:41 AM

  • Snooth User: Fishegg
    264220 1

    Can't beleive no mention of Carol Shelton Wines, one of the most decorated labels out there.

    Sep 26, 2009 at 7:10 AM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 238,749

    I have certainly reviewed Carol's wines in the past, and quite favorably I might add. I just had no samples on hand for this tasting. I look forward to trying the wines again.

    Oct 05, 2009 at 12:37 PM

  • Snooth User: zinfandel1
    Hand of Snooth
    154660 1,084

    Did we forget Ridge wines? I believe Paul Draper is the true Zin Master. Only my opinion.

    Dec 12, 2009 at 8:08 AM

  • I have a question. I just recently discovered a cache of wines that I had forgotten I put away a few years back & came across a 2006 Zin from V. Sattui winery in the Napa valley. I'm wondering if I should continue to let it age or should I enjoy it now? I know any time is a good time to enjoy a good wine, but will this one get better with age or turn?

    Feb 24, 2013 at 8:48 PM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 238,749

    I would guess that your bottle is right in in its sweet spot and it will remain there for another three years or so, slowly losing fruit and gaining aged wine character as it ages further. Enjoy it and let us know how it shows when you do! You can post about your experience with it in the Snooth forum. http://www.snooth.com/talk/

    Feb 24, 2013 at 9:27 PM

  • Thank you Gregory. I was thinking about enjoying it with a nice tenderloin steak this weekend. I'll let you know.

    Feb 25, 2013 at 9:18 PM

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