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Ridge is a Sonoma County pioneer, early advocate of sustainable viticulture, and long-time practitioner of minimal-intervention winemaking. Ridge also happens to produce some of the most consistently superb Zinfandel you’ll encounter. Consider “Three Valleys”, the winery’s entry-level Zinfandel blend, a good introduction. Unlike Ridge’s single-vineyard wines, which reflect the distinct character of each site, Three Valleys demonstrates skillful blending at the highest level. While Zinfandel sets the wine’s varietal character; old-vine Carignane contributes bright fruit and acidity; Petite Sirah gives spice, depth of colour, and firm tannins; and Grenache brings briar fruit and lively tannins.
Fruit is sourced from a number of Ridge-approved Sonoma vineyards. The winery takes great care in selecting the fruit, which is hand-harvested, crushed, then eased through primary and malolactic fermentation by native yeast at Monte Bello and Lytton Springs. Minimal sulphur is introduced. The wine spends 10 months in American oak (only 5% new) prior to blending.
“An engaging blend, well-knit and distinctive for its savoury raspberry and cherry flavours that draw in bay leaf, Asian spice and smoked pepper notes. Tannins are ripe and briary. Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Carignane and Mataro. Drink now through 2029.”
93 points, Wine Spectator, April 2021