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Amador is an Interesting Place

Test Person
March 20, 2014 | Test Person

Amador is an Interesting Place

Zinfandel grows very, very well in Amador. And, it has been growing here for a very long time. The original Grandpère vineyard across the street from Renwood Winery is acknowledged as the oldest, continuously producing zinfandel vineyard in the United States.

What are some of the factors that contribute to growing great zin? According to Joe Shebl, Winemaker and General Manager at Renwood Winery: it’s weather, soil, artisan production, and the micro-climates.

“We have dramatic shifts in diurnal temperatures,” he says, “as much as 40 degrees.” That means temperatures that reach 95 degrees Fahrenheit in the afternoon might cool to 50 degrees in the night. “This helps grapes maintain a really good natural acidity, a vibrancy. And that translates to a wonderful range of styles in the wine – from bright red fruit to heavier plums and blackberries."

"Little pockets of vineyards, set amidst the rolling hills create fruits that are so distinctive from vintage to vintage."

"Not to be cliché," he adds, "but Amador is a veritable mosaic of microclimates. Little pockets of vineyards, set amidst the rolling hills create fruits that are so distinctive from vintage to vintage. There are not big swaths of vineyards that cover extensive acreages that you will find in larger valleys. Here the hills are tighter, the rise to the mountains closer, and the land snakes individually along ridges, rises, rivers, and diverse geological landscaping."

Joe sees this expression best enunciated in the Signature Series.  What is the difference in taste profile, you ask?

Wine Blend Notes Vineyard
91% Zin,
9% Barbera    
One of our darkest wines. Plum and ultra-ripe cherries. Fox Creek 66%, Habacht 20%, Veauta 6%,
NCBP 4%, Oakmont 4%
100% Zin Blueberry, cinnamon to start; orange zest and marmalade mid-point to finish Habcht 72%, D’Agostini 16%, Deaver 12%
94% Zin,
6% Syrah
Bright red fruit, vanilla and cedar.                   Fox Creek 76%, Kirkland 18%, Veauta 6%
93% Zin,
7% Petite Sirah
Dark red fruit, clove, cocoa and dried herbs. Deaver 66%,
Fox Creek 28%, Bailey 7%
86% Zin, 11% Petite Sirah, 2% Syrah,
2% Barbera
This wine is from multiple vineyard sources, it is dark and dusky with raspberries, dried herbs, and cocoa dust. Kirkland 32%,
Fox Creek 26%, Bowling 26%, plus others.


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