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Alexander Valley Vineyards 2013

Editorial Review by Gregory Dal Piaz:

Very expressive on the nose with a nice balance of black toasted spices and gentle ripe herbal notes accenting the ripe black currant fruit. Bright and lively in the mouth with great clarity and nice intensity without much weight. This offers up beautiful black cherry fruit supported by ripe tannins in an elegant, pure, classic California Cabernet style. There's a touch of wood sweetness on the backend and the fruit is perhaps a bit simple but this is so Cabernet, and frankly a lot of fun to drink. Delicious wine. 90pts

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Alexander Valley Vineyards:
Sonoma County’s Alexander Valley was mostly prune orchards and pastures when, in 1962, Maggie and Harry Wetzel purchased a large portion of a homestead built by Cyrus Alexander, the valley’s nineteenth century namesake. Here, in a rural community of family farms and ranches, the Wetzel family settled. They raised livestock, cultivated bountiful gardens and restored Alexander’s original home, ma... Read more
Sonoma County’s Alexander Valley was mostly prune orchards and pastures when, in 1962, Maggie and Harry Wetzel purchased a large portion of a homestead built by Cyrus Alexander, the valley’s nineteenth century namesake. Here, in a rural community of family farms and ranches, the Wetzel family settled. They raised livestock, cultivated bountiful gardens and restored Alexander’s original home, making it the center of family life. With an eye to their neighbors in nearby Napa Valley, the Wetzels boldly planted premium grape varieties, among the first in the area. Then the family built a small winery. Hank Wetzel, oldest son of Maggie and Harry, produced Alexander Valley Vineyard’s first wine in 1975. His wife Linda set up the books and managed the winery office. AVV quickly established a reputation for estate grown wines with distinctive varietal character. Acclaimed for crisp Chardonnay and luscious Cabernet Sauvignon, Alexander Valley Vineyards brought recognition to the appellation and became a leading winery in Sonoma County. Hank’s younger sister, Katie Wetzel Murphy, joined the family business in 1979. An enthusiastic ambassador, she travels the country, fueling the family-owned winery’s reputation. Today the Alexander Valley is a prominent appellation known worldwide as the source of elegant, age worthy wines. The Wetzel Family Estate now grows fourteen grape varieties, on diverse sites stretching from the banks of the Russian River up onto the hillsides. Each grape variety is matched to a specific soil type and exposure. Vineyard Manager Mark Houser and Winemaker Kevin Hall work as a team to maximize fruit flavor in the vineyard and to create balanced wines that capture the grapes’ varietal characteristics. Hank Wetzel oversees the vineyard and winery operations, and his wife Linda continues to oversee administration. Now the third generation of Wetzels has joined the winery. Harry Wetzel, IV is assistant winemaker while younger brother Robert is the National Sales Manager. Alexander Valley Vineyards produces 100,000 cases annually, 17 varietal wines and proprietary blends. Seventy-five percent of AVV’s production is red wine. Chardonnay, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon constitute roughly half of total production. Other varietals include Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Gewurztraminer, Syrah, Sangiovese, Viognier, and Cabernet Franc. CYRUS, a limited production, proprietary red wine, named in honor of the pioneer Cyrus Alexander, is AVV’s benchmark, honoring the past while signaling the future. Hank Wetzel explains, "Cyrus is a statement, our ultimate achievement. With this wine, we express our history, tradition, and excellence". We invite you to visit our tasting room daily except major holidays. Tours are available by appointment. Tasting room hours: 10am–5pm Read less

Editorial Reviews for Alexander Valley Vineyards

Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065217,192
4.00 5
Vintage: 2009 09/12/2011

Very expressive on the nose with a nice balance of black toasted spices and gentle ripe herbal notes accenting the ripe black currant fruit. Bright and lively in the mouth with great clarity and nice intensity without much weight. This offers up beautiful black cherry fruit supported by ripe tannins in an elegant, pure, classic California Cabernet style. There's a touch of wood sweetness on the backend and the fruit is perhaps a bit simple but this is so Cabernet, and frankly a lot of fun to drink. Delicious wine. 90pts


Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065217,192
4.50 5
Vintage: 2007 09/03/2009

Raspberry candy and root beer greet the nose backed by a lovely, tense steely tone. Sweetly fruited with watermelon jolly ranchers and black raspberry fruits that are sweet and supple yet quite focused. This really has a wonderful mouthfeel, it’s still a little tight and rigid, and quite refreshing. The tannins are still just a touch stiff even if they are very well balanced and the wine can stand a bit of time in the bottle but it’s certainly attractive right now. 90pts


Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065217,192
4.00 5
Vintage: 2006 12/14/2009

Tobacco, earth, smoke, dried flowers and plum on the nose. Really fresh on entry with soft tannins and bright acidity supporting lightly smoky, cedar edged red plum and pomegranate fruits with note of shaved bittersweet chocolate, coffee and candied raspberries adding nice top notes. The tannins turn a touch drying and aggressive with time, though they can easily be tamed with some time in bottle or decanter. The finish is long and caressing with a layered feel and lovely, fresh fruit tones. This has compelling freshness and a lightness across the palate that makes it very appealing. 90pts


Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065217,192
4.00 5
Vintage: 1986 12/29/2008

Wow, if anything ever smelled like candied, dried chilies it is this! Sweet and finely herbal there is an underlay of dark, cassisy fruit but the smoky chile and black olive tones really dominate the nose. In the mouth the fruit moves to the fore and while this is mostly resolved there is plenty of structure to keep this feeling youthful. The finish shows a bit more evolution with tea and dried herb tones dominating with a eucalyptus top note. Not over complex but complete and fine. 88pts


Member Reviews for Alexander Valley Vineyards

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Snooth User: runningbear
43154633
2.50 5
Vintage: 2010 11/24/2012

For some reason, we have never been impressed with the Alexander Valley cabs. Will likely not try again

User Tags:

Would not recommend

Snooth User: Wolle
2034221,410
3.00 5
Vintage: 2009 07/28/2010

My Rating 87. Nice nose with hint of honey melon, Body fruity and lively with glycerin smooth mouthfeel . has not too much complexity


Snooth User: jbechert
576323219
2.50 5
Vintage: 2009 11/27/2011

This review is for Sin Zin 2009 (Alexander Valley Zinfandel) - I remember previous vintages being much better. At least it still comes with a cork. Although easy to drink, I find this vintage to be simple fruity and uninspired (86 pts).


Snooth User: 22roberts
127236185
3.50 5
Vintage: 2009 04/07/2013

Definitely worth the price.


Snooth User: lcassady
116139029
0.00 5
Vintage: 2009 04/02/2013

Smooth zin. Had in Hilton Head w/ Easter dinner 2013.


Snooth User: ramonaricketts
99531614
3.50 5
Vintage: 2009 12/15/2011

I like it very well.


Snooth User: addieline
84155811
5.00 5
Vintage: 2009 09/28/2011

This was one of my favorite wines; I like them big and smokey, this one was smoldering of oak and tobacco, Love It! That is, the 2007 vintage. I've since tried the 2009 vintage and it is good too, not as good though.


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External Reviews for Alexander Valley Vineyards

External Review
Vintage: 2010 02/20/2013

The 2010 is a blend of all five Bordeaux varietals. The wine was barrel aged for 14 months in French and American oak. This Cabernet Sauvignon shows a bit more restraint than prior vintages. To balance that elegant restraint, Winemaker Kevin Hall added 7%


External Review
Vintage: 2010 03/07/2013

It tends to have a softer tannin profile than our Cabernet Sauvignon and the 2010 has flavors of plum, black cherry, vanilla, blueberry and cassis. This is not a heavy wine, but it does have broad mouthfeel and a long, juicy finish.


External Review
Vintage: 2009 10/15/2011

Aromas of raspberry, plum, black cherry, and a touch of citrus. Flavors of plum, black cherry, black pepper, spice and pomegranate fill the glass.


External Review
Vintage: 2009 11/27/2012

aromas of chocolate laced with cinnamon, blackberry, plum, black cherry and exotic wood spice. On the palate, a velvety entry is followed by concentrated black cherry and red plum fruit accented with toffee. It finishes with a hint of roasted coffee. Supp


External Review
Vintage: 2009 07/06/2011

On the nose you will find aromas of black cherry, plum, cassis, cocoa and some earthy notes In the glass there are flavors of black cherry, plum, cassis, chocolate and slight eucalyptus. The 2009 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon is one of the most elegant cabs I have produced in recent years.


External Review
Vintage: 2009 09/23/2011

"The 2009 Gewurz


Vintage: 2008 07/05/2011

"Rating: 85/100 - As reviewed by Connoisseurs' Guide to California Wine (www.cgcw.com) in the November 2010 issue. Although showing a reasonable sense of ripe red cherries to start and a bit of the tactile plumpness for which Merlot is known


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