• SN: 87

    Snooth Editorial Score

    87

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Ridge Vineyards Lytton Springs 2007

Winemaker's Notes:

Of the 2007 Lytton Springs Ridge writes: "After a dry winter and spring, budbreak came early. Despite the lack of spring rain, temperate summer weather mitigated vine stress and created ideal ripening conditions. At veraison, we dropped a quarter of the young zinfandel. A warm August ripened the fruit earlier than expected, and we harvested the thirtyfour parcels as flavors developed fully, fermenting each separately on its natural yeasts. Color and tannin extracted easily, reducing maceration time to seven days, on average. After malolactic, we chose twenty-one lots for this year's wine. Aged for fifteen months in air-dried american oak, this classic Lytton Springs is remarkable for its richness, balance, and elegant texture. It will soften and gain complexity over the next ten years."

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3.72 5 0.5
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Ridge Vineyards:
The history of Ridge Vineyards begins in 1885, when Osea Perrone (third person on bench wearing tall boots), a doctor who became a prominent member of San Francisco's Italian community, bought 180 acres near the top of Monte Bello Ridge. He terraced the slopes and planted vineyards; using native limestone, he constructed the Monte Bello Winery, producing the first vintage under that name... Read more
The history of Ridge Vineyards begins in 1885, when Osea Perrone (third person on bench wearing tall boots), a doctor who became a prominent member of San Francisco's Italian community, bought 180 acres near the top of Monte Bello Ridge. He terraced the slopes and planted vineyards; using native limestone, he constructed the Monte Bello Winery, producing the first vintage under that name in 1892. This unique cellar, built into the mountainside on three levels, is Ridge's production facility. At 2600', it is surrounded by the "upper vineyard." In the 1940s, William Short, a theologian, bought the abandoned winery and vineyard just below the Perrone property; he replanted several parcels to cabernet sauvignon in the late 1940s. From these vines — now the "middle vineyard"— new owners Dave Bennion and his three partners, all Stanford Research Institute engineers, made a quarter-barrel of "estate" cabernet. That Monte Bello Cabernet was among California's finest wines of the era. Its quality and distinctive character, and the wines produced from these same vines in 1960 and '61, convinced the partners to re-bond the winery in time for the 1962 vintage. The first zinfandel was made in 1964, from a small nineteenth-century vineyard farther down the ridge. This was followed in 1966 by the first Geyserville zinfandel. The founding families reclaimed the Monte Bello terraces, increasing vineyard size from fifteen to forty-five acres. Working on weekends, they made wines of regional character and unprecedented intensity. By 1968, production had increased to just under three thousand cases per year, and in 1969, Paul Draper joined the partnership. A Stanford graduate in philosophy—recently returned from setting up a winery in Chile's coast range—he was a practical winemaker, not an enologist. His knowledge of fine wines and traditional methods complemented the straightforward "hands off" approach pioneered at Ridge. Under his guidance the old Perrone winery (acquired the previous year) was restored, the finest vineyard lands leased or purchased, the consistent quality and international reputation of the wines established. Cabernet and zinfandel account for most of the production; syrah, grenache, carignane, and petite sirah constitute a small percentage. Known primarily for its red wines, Ridge has also made limited amounts of chardonnay since 1962. Lytton Springs, in Sonoma County, became part of the Ridge estate in 1991. A quarter century's experience with this vineyard had convinced us that it was an exceptional piece of ground. Forty consecutive vintages of Geyserville attest to yet another stunning combination of location and varietals. Though born in the early sixties to the post-Prohibition world of modern California winemaking, Ridge relies on nature and tradition rather than technology. Our approach is straightforward: find intense, flavorful grapes; intrude upon the process only when necessary; draw the fruit's distinctive character and richness into the wine. Read less

Editorial Reviews for Ridge Vineyards Lytton Springs

Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
89065213,741
3.50 5
11/02/2013

Stemmy, herbal and complex on the nose which retains plenty of fresh fruit while showing wonderful integration of the oak. On entry this shows a little caramelly and dried plummy fruit character, soft, then brightening on the palate it’s definitely showing some evolved fruit here, all dark and deep small berried black fruit, with the tannins fairly resolved. With it’s savory liquorice and minty notes this tastes Italian. Drink up. 87pts


Member Reviews for Ridge Vineyards Lytton Springs

Add your review
Snooth User: EMark
8478046,129
4.00 5
12/01/2011

71% Zinfandel, 22% Petite Sirah, 7% Carignane. Deep dark color. Wonderful fruity nose. Not as full-bodied on the palate as I might have expected. Nice blackberry flavor. Nice, not overly acid. Very little tannin. I do not think this will be a that wants a lot of age. Drink it now. US$24.99 at Total Wine


Snooth User: atonalprime
1577901,412
4.00 5
11/15/2010

Decanted 4 hours, Raspberries and cedar on the nose, bright concentrated flavor on the palate, notes of red bramble fruit and hazelnuts. Finish of cherries and cranberries with notes of aged gouda. Great balance and mouthfeel. Still a fair bit of tannin. Good acid.


Snooth User: VegasOenophile
20275912,195
4.00 5
05/03/2010

Bright jammy nose of brambly red fruit. Nice, pleasant mouthfeel. Nice balance and finish. - Tasted at Ridge Lytton Springs 4/21/10


Snooth User: ehrenfrd
83800139
4.00 5
05/22/2010

Really enjoyed this one. Big bountiful nose -- lots of red fruits, with a hint of tobacco. Tasting, this hits big on the front end with strawberries and blackberries, the mid-palate is creamy and thick with a hint of chocolate and a bit of tobacco. The finish is loooong on this one. Loved it.


Snooth User: SArmour21
90619687
4.00 5
08/11/2011

This is another wonderful Zinfandel offering from Ridge. Beautiful royal purple colored, it is rich, supple, and full-bodied with delicious spice, blackberry, and dark fruit flavors.


Snooth User: larrythek
41683936
3.50 5
04/19/2010

My local store had this available for $14 per half-bottle - definitely worth a try. In a blind tasting, I'm not sure I'd pick it out as a zin-based wine. Tho full-bodied and flavorful, it's fairly soft and smooth. A subdued version of the brambly tart berry fruit I usually associate with zins - maybe it's due to the P. Sirah (22%) and Carignane (7%) which is added to the zin (71%). Tho it's quite dry, there's a bit of an off-sweet mid-palate. It's a very good, flavorful wine, at a not unreasonable price for Ridge quality.


Snooth User: msvenice
98174523
3.50 5
11/26/2011

It's been a while since I tried this, but I only make note of the wines that impress me. I tried this one in a flight at Cru. It was great!


1 2

External Reviews for Ridge Vineyards Lytton Springs

External Review
09/02/2011

Smooth, rich and polished, with a pretty array of black cherry, blackberry, raspberry and plum. Elegant, fruity aftertaste. Drink now through 2004.


External Review
09/02/2011

The 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. It should drink well for six years.


External Review
09/02/2011

A vineyard blend that included 16% Petite Sirah, 2% Carignane, 4% Mataro and 1% Alicante Bouschet. Meaty, funky and ripe, with intense fruit, lots of earthy, barnyard accents, and a long, tannic finish. This is old style Zin, no holds barred, with full-throttle flavors for aficionados.


External Review
03/12/2010

From winemaker Paul Draper comes a truly iconic Zinfandel. For several decades, the Lytton Springs vineyard in Sonoma County has been the source for these well-balanced, pure, and age-worthy bottlings. While rambunctious in their youth, a few years of cellaring brings out layers of flavors and an elegant quality very rarely found in California Zinfandel.


External Review
09/02/2011

Equally superb is the 2001 Lytton Springs Proprietary Red, a blend of 76% Zinfandel, 17% Petite Sirah, and 7% Carignan (14.7% alcohol). I was knocked out by multiple dimensions and combination of of jammy briery raspberry and currant fruit intermingled with licorice, spice, and pepper. Its dense purple color is accompanied by a rich, full-bodied palate presentation, and a long, seamless finish. Enjoy this outrageously delicious Zinfandel over the next 5-6 years.


External Review
09/02/2011

Without the stamp of one particular varietal, this wine manages to provide complex, well-integrated, spicy plum and wild berry and taosty, cedary oak. A touch hot on the finish, but it's rich and intense, with lots of power and flavor. Drink now through 2003. A blend: 78 percent Zinfandel, 19 percent Petite Sirah, 2 percent Carignane, 1 percent Grenache.


External Review
09/02/2011

Distinctive if unapologetically rustic, with wild berry, licorice and smoky dill aromas and ripe, powerful blueberry, tar and leather flavors wrapped in muscular tannins. Zinfandel, Petite Sirah and Carignane. Best from 2010 through 2013.


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Of the 2007 Lytton Springs Ridge writes: "After a dry winter and spring, budbreak came early. Despite the lack of spring rain, temperate summer weather mitigated vine stress and created ideal ripening conditions. At veraison, we dropped a quarter of the young zinfandel. A warm August ripened the fruit earlier than expected, and we harvested the thirtyfour parcels as flavors developed fully, fermenting each separately on its natural yeasts. Color and tannin extracted easily, reducing maceration time to seven days, on average. After malolactic, we chose twenty-one lots for this year's wine. Aged for fifteen months in air-dried american oak, this classic Lytton Springs is remarkable for its richness, balance, and elegant texture. It will soften and gain complexity over the next ten years."

Closure: Cork


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