One of the best vintages in memory, the 2007 harvest at Leonhardt Vineyards featured picture-perfect ripening conditions—steady warmth throughout the late summer, cool evenings, and no rain. An early warm spell in spring helped the vines develop fruit early, and the long ripening season helped the vines produce exceptionally complex fruit flavors.
The zinfandel grapes ripened a bit more quickly than the petite sirah, and were harvested on August 29th, 2007. We picked the fruit at first daybreak, to keep the fruit cool, and hand-harvested into small bins for the trip to the winery. The petite sirah was harvested just a few days later, on September 2nd.
The fruit was carefully hand-sorted on a conveyor-sorting table to remove leaves or any less-than-perfect grape clusters, and then destemmed and crushed to tank. Fermentation took approximately 10 days to complete, and the fermenting grapes allowed to reach temperatures in the high 80s, to extract maximum flavor and colors. From the moment the wine started fermenting, the wine was jet-black in color and showed great depth of flavor. Once the fermentation was finished, we gently pressed the grapes in our special membrane-press to extract all of wine without extracting any harsh or bitter tannin.
The wine was aged in small oak casks, approximately 20% new French and American oak barrels with the remainder in older oak casks. We racked the wine from barrels to tank three times during aging, to help develop a smooth velvety texture and develop complex flavors. After 10 months of aging, the wine was ready to be bottled to preserve its intense fruit and lovely spice.
Varietals: 92% Zinfandel, 8% Petite Sirah
Appellation: Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County
TA and pH: 6.7 TA and 3.7 pH when bottled
Time in oak: 10 months in 20% new French and American oak
Color: Dense black purple
Aroma: Beautiful fruit aromas of black raspberry, blackberry, and currents, along with black pepper and clove spice, and hints of violets and lavender.
Flavors: Intense, luscious blackberry and black raspberry fruit, hints of cherry, plum, and currents, chocolate, thick, mouthcoating texture on the midpalette, great length and persistant flavors on finish of black raspberry, pepper, and clove spice. Balanced, complex, and flavorful.
Number of cases produced: 1694 cases (750 ml)
Price: $48 Suggested Retail Price