2017 Dashe Reserve Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel

2017 Dashe Reserve Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel

¥5,830 (incl. tax)

In 2016, in order to mark 20 years of making Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel, Dashe Cellars decided to craft a special reserve cuvée from select barrels of wine from the most distinctive vineyards they work with. This was a wine that showed off the very best characteristics of the region - the complex spectrum of flavors, and a balance of pure fruit flavors and bright acidity. The result, a complex, lovely, and fruit-forward wine, inspired them to try it again in 2017. Aiming for bright acidity, they harvested early and were able to avoid the wildfires that afflicted the region later on. About 10% Petite Sirah was added to the blend for additional texture and structure. They say it’s one of the most intense and complex Dry Creek Zinfandels they’ve made, “with dark chocolate and black pepper spice underlying the velvety, intense mid-palate and the balanced, sweet red-fruit finish.” 

Winery


Winery Description

Most winemakers would feel “married to the job,” but Dashe Winery, founded and run by husband and wife team Michael and Anne Dashe, gives new meaning to “labor of love.” Michael studied at UC Davis and gained experience at Ch. Lafite-Rothschild, Far Niente and Ridge Vineyards, among others, while Anne trained at the University of Bordeaux and worked at Ch. La Dominique as well as in the Napa Valley. A shared passion for wine brought Michael and Anne together and led them to start the winery just months after getting married in 1996. But what they really shared was a desire to create something new: California wines with a European personality. Their wines would be made “naturally,” so they would express the pure flavors of their fruit and the terroir of the vineyards. 

 A small 10,000 case winery, Dashe Cellars has not followed the typical script of a wine country start-up. They do not own any vineyards, preferring to obtain grapes through long-term contracts with growers of older, low-yielding vineyards in the cooler appellations of Sonoma County. And the winery is located in downtown Oakland – with neither a barn nor tractor in sight. Yet these decisions have allowed them to focus on perfecting an artisinal approach to winemaking, including small-lot fermentation, the use of indigenous yeasts, and little-or-no fining or filtration. They also seek to limit the influence of oak on their wines by using large-format oak vessels including 900-gallon foudres and 120-gallon puncheons, as well as older traditional French barrels. 

 Ultimately, where the story of Dashe Cellars has really moved off script has been in styling a new personality for an old California stalwart, Zinfandel. While their portfolio includes Grenache, Merlot, Petite Sirah and Riesling, it emphasizes single-vineyard Zinfandel. Yet Michael and Anne Dashe have refuted the belief that great California Zin must be massive and port-like in alcohol content. Not one Zinfandel among their current releases reaches 15% in alcohol; these wines emphasize balance, elegance and perfume over power, and (refuting another notion about the power and preferences of critics) they are routinely awarded high scores. In a recent blog post, Michael Dashe set down his goal for this archetypal California grape, saying “Zinfandel needs to compete—and should compete—on the world stage, with other great varietals from other countries. It needs to taste good on its own, with fruit, acidity, alcohol, and structure all in balance.”

About this Wine


Country USA
Region California
Appellation(s) Dry Creek Valley (Sonoma)
Winery Dashe
Vintage 2017
Color Red
Varietal(s) 90% Zinfandel, 10% Petite Sirah
Closure Cork
Volume 750ml
Alcohol 14.5%
Product Code MD17RZN
UPC 654884101096

Owning & Enjoying


Tasting notes

Black purple color greets the eyes while aromas of blackberry, black currants, chocolate, plum and violets entice the nose. Intense flavors of blackberry, cassis, and pomegranate emerge on the velvety mid-palate while hints of licorice linger on the finish. 

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