Revisiting the 2000 Nalle Zinfandel Tasting notes on a unique library wine, October, 2012
Several weeks ago I had the privilege of visiting Nalle Winery with some buddies. You were there, replete with rubber boots, and pulled out a few library selections available for purchase. Among them was the 2000 ZInfandel. I remember you claiming there was a bit of brett in this bottling, which I like. That and the age of the bottle piqued my curiosity enough to purchase the bottle. As I recall, you wanted a report on my impression. Well here it is. The wine is excellent. I find it well worth the $50 price tag. Tell me there's more.
Here are some details. The bottle was set upright and held in a cool dark place until tonight. It was opened and several glasses poured out. Each taster found the wine delicious. For me, it was elegant, lean without being thin or stingy, claret-like, and had a bracing acidity to buoy up a core of subtle fruit. Coming from old vines in the Dry Creek appellation, tasters were predisposed to expecting a heavily fruit forward expression of this varietal. You know the type I'm sure - think, syrupy, fruit bombs. We were all pleasantly surprised. Two tasters likened it to some fine Italian wines, as opposed to a "California" wine. The balance of high acidity, modest fruit, restraint, low alcohol, and tannic structure made for a decidedly exceptional tasting experience. The wine had a long finish, was flawless, and the brett very much understated. Well done. Kudos to the vigneron et fils.
Dave "Malakai" McMullen