Zinfandel of the Month is a new feature on Zinfandel Chronicles. For a little background please see the first installment published four months ago. Keep in mind that although the Zinfandel of the Month might be an older bottle, the current vintage will be one you can find at retail or via the mailing list.
The February Zinfandel of the Month is the 2007 A. Rafanelli.
Alberto Rafanelli, an Italian immigrant, first founded A. Rafanelli Winery in the early 1900’s. It wasn’t until the early 70’s that Alberto’s son, Americo, came out with the present day label and started selling the wine commercially. David and Patty Rafanelli now run the winery and a 4th generation Rafanelli, their daughter Shelly, is the winemaker. The winery is perhaps best known for their Zinfandel but also produces Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with all the fruit sourced from their vineyard in Dry Creek Valley. I’ve previously posted on Rafanelli in What’s Your Price for Zin?
Dark crimson in color. 14.6% ABV. Aromas of red fruits, pepper and vanilla. Spicy on the palate with medium body and acidity. Flavors of boysenberry, raspberry and plums. The wine seems to pick up some weight with a little time in the glass. Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel at its finest. Drink over the next 1-3 years.
My rating: 92 points.
Rafanelli is very traditional in how they run the winery. If you want to join the mailing list you need to send them a letter. They do not correspond via email, but will likely answer the phone if you give them a call. The extra effort required to acquire the wine is worth it.
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