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. Many of these vineyards are heritage sites planted by Italian immigrants and date back to the late 1800s . They have also recently added their first whites, two blends from historic, old-vine vineyards plus Sonoma County’s first ever Grüner Veltliner.
Papera Vineyard is situated in the Russian River Valley and was planted in 1934 by Charlie Papera. Most vineyards from this era are comprised of a number of mixed black varieties. Papera, on the other hand, is 95% Zinfandel.
Bright crimson in color. 14.9% ABV. 93% Zinfandel and 7% Carignane. Super nose of fresh red fruits, citrus and pepper. Medium body with picture perfect acidity. Exceptional balance. Raspberry liqueur, cherry cordial and white pepper on the palate. The finish is long, graceful and seamless. Everything you can ask for in a Zinfandel from what may be my single favorite vineyard. Drink over the next 1-2 years.
My rating: 95 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.
I also wrote about Papera Ranch in Top 10 Old Vine Zinfandel Vineyards.
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