2016 Picnic Hill Zinfandel
Picnic Hill Zinfandel has been our flagship offering since the winery’s founding in 1973. It remains a benchmark for premium Zinfandel from the California Shenandoah Valley: deep rich fruit, spice, and full of aging potential, yet equally enjoyed in its youth. The 2016 vintage was yet again a hot summer but allowed us to harvest the fruit in early September. Aged for 16 months in oak (35% new oak), this wine will begin to open up in 2020 and age for 10+ years.
Planted in 1896 on its own rootstock, the vineyard continues to be quite vigorous in normal rain years - even with dry-farming and head pruning. Employing aggressive cane thinning and canopy management, this 120-year old vineyard consistently produces 3-4 tons per acre. The 7-acre vineyard is planted on a south-facing slope composed primarily of decomposed granite and iron rich soil. The resulting fruit is concentrated and complex.
Aromas of nutmeg, dark chocolate, and cherry liqueur followed by cedar, tobacco, and a hint of black pepper. Flavors of raspberries, cocoa, and cola explode in the mouth followed by a smooth finish full of spice and tannins.