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 .
The Piner-Olivet Ranches bottling is a relatively new Zinfandel in the Carlisle portfolio. The wine is a blend of vineyards near the intersection of Piner and Olivet in the Russian River Valley.
Bright crimson in color. 15% ABV. Lovely nose of red fruits, peach and citrus. Medium body with perfect acidity. Bursting with bright, juicy fruits. Raspberry, blood orange, pomegranate and pepper on the palate. Exceptional length on the finish. Outstanding wine that embodies the best qualities of Russian River Valley Zinfandel. Absolutely delicious. Best over the next several years.
My rating: 94 points.
The 2022 version of this wine should be released early next year. I will buy a healthy amount.
I can make an argument that Carlisle is the best Zinfandel producer in the state of California. 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 2020 Zinfandel Chronicles Power Rankings. I also had a chance to visit Mike Officer and wrote about that in 2020 Carlisle Zinfandel Barrel Samples With Mike Officer.