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John Treder

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Zinaholic

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1849

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Santa Rosa, CA

Joseph Swan Stellwagen Vineyard Zinfandel '06

by John Treder » Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:59 am

Sorry I'm not feeling punny tonight, but Something Had To Be Said.
So here goes.
I always liked Rod's Stellwagen Zin, and this bottle was sort of why.
I opened it for spaghetti tonight (after all, it's only Zin!) and dawdled over the meal for half an hour, sipping and enjoying the wine.
Stellwagen Vineyard was on Sonoma Mountain, just off the road between Glen Ellen and Bennett Valley. I'm not sure exactly where, but it was supposed to be high up.
Whatever. It was old head-pruned Zin in, I guess, a somewhat unusual location. I've heard stories from Rod Berglund, and I may have got the details confused, but as I understand it, the vineyard was owned by a family, and the older people died, and the heirs had the vineyard either replanted or sold off. Or maybe pieces of both; I don't know. Anyway, the old vineyard either was no longer planted to Zin or was no longer available to Rod. The last vintage I have is '08.
More than 20 years ago, I had put Zin from this vineyard into my head as the Cabernet of Zins. I always thought it was to other Zins as Cab is to Merlot.
It's tighter than any DCV Zin, even the best, and richer than any Sonoma Valley or RRV Zin than I can name.
This bottle reinforced my belief.
A slow, smooth entry, revealing layers of berries and indeed black cherries and a slow warming. The Zinfiandel comes toward the back palate with old vine dust and Zin brambles, all without any stridency. The finish is very long for Zin (would be medium to long for a good Cab) and it all ends in a glissando diminuendo, it I can borrow a musical phrase.
It's a lady with strong personality, while even the best DCV Zin is definitely a man.
I have 3 more bottles: an '07 and two '08s, and then another part of my life will recede into the past.
John in the wine county
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Lou Kessler

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Doesn't buy green bananas

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Fri Mar 24, 2006 4:20 pm

Re: Joseph Swan Stellwagen Vineyard Zinfandel '06

by Lou Kessler » Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:14 am

I haven't seen a bottle of J Swan wine in many moons. Swan at one time was the king of zins among the geeks but time marches on.

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