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 . Expect to see a Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon from Montecillo Vinyard and a Russian River Valley Pinot Noir in the near future.
Sodini Vineyard is on Limerick Lane in the Russian River Valley. I was first exposed to Sodini with the Rochioli Ranch Red, a Zinfandel blend, that Rochioli produced in the mid to late 90’s. In 2012 Carlisle split a lease on this site with Bedrock, but only made one wine here before giving full control of the vineyard to Bedrock. Bedrock and Once & Future currently produce wines from Sodini.
Crimson in color. 15.2% ABV. 95% Zinfandel and 5% mixed blacks. Savory nose of red and black fruits, cocoa powder and blood. Medium to full bodied with vibrant acidity. Well balanced and notable for the dark fruit profile. Black cherry liqueur, currants, pepper and minerals on the palate. Exceptional length on the finish. Far afield from the bright fruits I am accustomed to from a Carlisle Zinfandel but delicious nonetheless. Drink over the next 2-4 years.
My rating: 92 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’ve wrote about Carlisle previously in Winery Mailing Lists: The Fab 5 and The 2018 Zinfandel Chronicles Power Rankings. I also had a chance to visit Mike Officer recently and wrote about that in An Afternoon at Carlisle Winery.