Carlisle Winery & Vineyards was founded in 1998 by Mike and Kendall Officer. Their passion is clear: Small lots of Zinfandel and Syrah from exceptional, historic vineyards.
Montafi Vineyard was planted in 1926. Located farther up the eastern bench of the Laguna de Santa Rosa flood plain, bordering the Santa Rosa city limits, this vineyard is mostly Zinfandel but does contain a good amount of Alicante Bouschet and Grand Noir.
Violet in color. 14.9% ABV. Crazy good nose of jammy red fruits, tar and white pepper. Light on its feet with just enough acidity. Raspberry compote, strawberries, pepper and lavendar on the palate. Gritty tannins on a super finish. Ready to drink. Montafi is my favorite of the Carlisle single vineyard Zinfandel lineup.
My rating: 93 points.
Current vintages of the various Carlisle wines are available via the mailing list, which is exceptionally long. Several retail outlets in California stock Carlisle, but you need to check with them at the time the winery releases their wines in the Spring and Fall.
In related news, Seghesio Family Winery recently purchased Montafi Vineyard. It is my understanding Carlisle will still continue to receive fruit for the foreseeable future.
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