Ravenswood Winery


No Wimpy Wines. That’s the motto of Ravenswood Winery, a winery that believes that white Zinfandel’s best quality is that it preserved Old Vine Zinfandel during Prohibition. That’s not just some flashy name either: Joel Peterson, founder and winemaker of Ravenswood and nicknamed “the Godfather of Zin,” lives it every day. He spent 15 tireless years trying to get his winery to turn a profit, and while his first harvest was in 1976, it was in 1992 that he finally quit his other job at a clinical lab, splitting his life in two the whole time.

Financing the operation was always difficult. For many years, the winery moved around, trying to find a cheap place to house their operations. It wasn’t until their Vintners Blend program was launched that they were finally able to settle down with the money they made, in 1991. Starting in the mid 80s, Vintners Blend was a less expensive wine, thanks to the fact that it was created by blending many grapes from different Read more »

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Popular wines by Ravenswood Winery

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Varietals Produced by Ravenswood Winery View all

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Merlot

    The Occitanian word “merlot” translates to “young blackbird.” An accurate description for this popular, early-budding...

  • Syrah

    The irony here is that Syrah’s origins could give Carmen Sandiego a run for her international wallet. Syrah’s deepest...

  • Zinfandel

    Parentage of the grape: Crljenak to Austria to America. In the 1970s, claims surfaced that the Italian Primitivo is l...

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Ravenswood Winery on Snooth

  • Carnivores and grillers, a few reasons to love Syrah: it’s a fantastic wine for pairing with any roasted meats, especially red meats like beef and lamb, as well as wild game. It is often peppery and sometimes smoky, with a roasted fruit and/or roasted meat flavor profile that makes it a fine accompaniment to anything barbecued or grilled (even, ... Read More

    From the article Top 15 Syrahs for Grilling

  • Ravenswood Zinfandel Barricia Sonoma Valley 2010


    No written review

    Wine review by Al Faison

  • Ravenswood Zen of Zinfandel 2010


    Wife and I enjoyed it Read More

    Wine review by defStef

  • Ravenswood California Lodi Old Vine Zinfandel 2009


    This Old Vine Zinfandel had a deep ruby red color. The nose was dominated by plums, strawberry jam, blackcurrant jam and earth. The wine had a label listed ABV of 14.5%. Unfortunately, I could smell the alcohol, too. On the palate, Old Vine Zinfandel was very fruit-forward. There were some minerals and a decent acidity, too. The wine had a small... Read More

    Wine review by vino in love

  • Zinfandel, it’s no secret that I’ve carried on a long and intimate relationship with you. There is so much you have to offer. Sometimes you're a bit rough and tumble, edgy, even dangerous, while other times you’re coy or playful. But you’re always there for me, with joyous fruit, classic bramble notes and structure, allowing for early consumptio... Read More

    From the article California Zinfandel: A Lesson in Vintage and Regional Success

  • Ravenswood Zinfandel Alexander Valley Big River 2009


    A bit oily, with notes of redwood, dark Brambly fruit and dark, roasted coffee-toned fruit on the nose. Soft and broad and slightly sweet on entry. This is a touch disjointed, with a noticeable streak of wood tannins obvious on the palate lending a dry, firm texture but leading to a bit of hollowness on the mid-palate. Theres plenty of red plum... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • Ravenswood Sonoma County Old Vine Zinfandel 2010


    Great, big, slightly jammy raspberry, Zin berry aromas with notes of vanilla and sweet cinnamon-sugar toast greet the nose. This is big entry, with a hint of sweetness accenting the plummy fruit which shows tons of wild berry fruit, black raspberry, and bramble on the finish. This is a big, complete Zin, not nuanced but layered and balanced, an... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • Ravenswood Zinfandel Sonoma 2009


    Black and briary on the nose with a little blue plum fruit followed by complex notes of hickory smoke and tree bark, with floral top notes and a hint of a beefy edge. Nice and snappy in the mouth with a lighter-styled mouthfeel showing decent acidity. This has lovely fruit, blue plum, wild cherry, and boysenberry that are fragrant in the mouth a... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • Ravenswood Zinfandel Sonoma Valley Old Hill 2009


    A bit oaky but at the same time quite complex on the nose, with a marine quality here adding freshness to the blueberry and raspberry fruit, all topped with deep and complex oily nuttiness. On entry this is cool and compressed, showing fine structure, taut with lovely grape skin and wild plum fruit full of spicy inner mouth perfumes, and streake... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • Ravenswood Zinfandel Barricia Sonoma Valley 2010


    Very spicy on the nose, with fine red currant and almost rhubarb fruit thats topped with a strong Swedish Fish candy aroma. Entering the mouth smooth, polished and powerful, this is decidedly structured, with big tannins and acids embedded in the rich, chewy fruit. Licorice and candied Swedish Fish accent the plummy, earthy and perfumed bramble ... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

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