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2008 Painter Bridge Zinfandel

VARIETAL COMPOSITION

88% Zinfandel, 7% Petite Sirah, 4% Syrah and 1.0% Grenache

ZINFANDEL

The 2008 Painter Bridge Zinfandel comes from four Paso Robles Zinfandel blocks and is blended with a wonderfully soft and dark Paso Robles Petite Sirah for body and breadth. A bit of Syrah was blended for spice, and a smattering of potent fruit came from Grenache Noir. Each lot of Zinfandel was fermented separately, extracting the nuances of each individual vineyard block with an eye towards suppleness of texture before aging in Hungarian oak barrels.

The stylistic goal of Painter Bridge Zinfandel is to emphasize the tremendous red fruit characters of the Zinfandel grape without overpowering the delicacy of the fruit with oak.


Technical Data

Vintage:

2008

Origin:

Paso Robles

Total Acidity:

0.68

pH:

3.53

Alcohol:

13.0% alcohol by volume

Residual Sugar:

0.46 g/100ml

Maturation:

Tank for 6 months

 


Winemaker's Comments

The 2008 Painter Bridge Zinfandel shows great color density with youthful garnet red hues. The aromas are ripe red fruits of raspberry, black currant and strawberry preserves with black tea, white and black pepper spice. The palate delivers a fruity, plump, yet supple wine with some spicy Zinfandel pepperiness. Enjoy with pasta puttanesca, pizza or grilled meats.

Price: $7.00 750ml

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2008 Painter Bridge Chardonnay

VARIETAL COMPOSITION

91.3% Chardonnay, 7.6% Muscat Canelli and 1.1% Gewurztraminer

CHARDONNAY

Chardonnay for Painter Bridge is grown in the cool and windswept environs of the Arroyo Seco appellation of Monterey County, renowned for producing Chardonnays with powerful aromatics and remarkable texture. It is here that the canvas for Painter Bridge Chardonnay begins.

The Chardonnay is first fermented in older French oak barrels to enhance pure fruit expression with wild and cultured yeast from the Burgundy region of France. Immediately after completion of alcoholic fermentation, the barrels are stirred and the Chardonnay with its yeast lees is transferred to stainless steel tanks for additional aging and maturation. To enhance the bold fruitiness of Painter Bridge Chardonnay, a touch of Muscat Canelli and Gewurztraminer from Monterey County are blended, enriching the enticing floral character. The blended wine is then cold stabilized, fined, and sterile-filtered to bottle.

The resulting wine is delightfully full-flavored with pretty, forward fruit aromas creating a pleasant, quaffable Chardonnay.


Technical Data

Vintage: 2008
Origin: Arroyo Seco and Monterey County
Total Acidity: 0.69 g/100ml
pH: 3.62
Alcohol: 13.5% alcohol by volume
Residual Sugar: 0.50 g/100ml
Maturation: 6 months in stainless steel
Sizes: 750 ml


Winemaker's Comments

This 2008 Painter Bridge Chardonnay is pale yellow in color with attractive aromas of Bosc pear, apple and white flowers, with a touch of vanilla and honey. The aromas are echoed on the silky textured palate, which is cleansed with fresh acidity and richness. Enjoy as an aperitif or with your favorite pasta, chicken, or seafood dish.

Price: $7.00 750ml

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2008 Cypress Vineyards Merlot

The windswept Cypress tree, the unmistakable signature plant of California’s coastal terrain, owes its gnarled appearance to the maritime air’s persistent movement either inland or seaward.  The ocean’s influence on the Central Coast winegrowing region is significant – keeping coastal and inland valley’s refreshingly cool at night, while preserving the grape’s natural acidity and flavor.  For Cypress Vineyards Merlot, the 2008 vintage...


Technical Data

Composition: 90.7% Merlot, 7.7% Syrah, 1.6% Cabernet
Origin: 52.9% San Luis Obispo County, 36.0% Monterey County and 11.1% Paso Robles
Total Acidity: 0.67 g/100ml
pH at Bottling: 3.59
Alcohol: 13.80% by volume
Residual Sugar: 0.42 g/100 ml


Winemaker's Comments

The 2008 Cypress Vineyards Merlot presents a garnet red color of medium density with hues indicative of full maturation. Lovely aromas of fresh plums, red currants and sour cherry, are complemented by a subtle hint of mint. The soft texture of this wine follows through to a long and satisfying finish. I would recommend the 2008 Cypress Vineyards Merlot with beef filets with a red wine sauce or barbecued ribs. This wine should be enjoyed in its youth or cellared up to five years.

 Price: $10.00 750ml

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2008 Cypress Vineyards White Zinfandel

The windswept Cypress tree, the unmistakable signature plant of California’s coastal terrain, owes its gnarled appearance to the maritime air’s persistent movement either inland or seaward.  The ocean’s influence on the Central Coast winegrowing region is significant, keeping coastal and inland valleys refreshing cool, while preserving the grape’s natural acidity and flavor. Temperature is critical for development of fragrance, flavor and acidity – too little heat, and grapes rarely ripen, too much and the acidity, delicate and endearing qualities of the grape are lost.  For Cypress Vineyards White Zinfandel, the daily cooling air from the Pacific moves directly from Monterey Bay and down the Monterey appellations of the Salinas Valley, creating a White Zinfandel with delicate raspberry, strawberry and watermelon aromas and flavors matched with a crisp acidity.  Harvesting and pressing in the vineyard at night ensures the preservation of these bright fruit flavors.


Technical Data

Varietal Composition: 76.2% Zinfandel, 23.8% Gewurztraminer
Total Acidity: 0.71 g/100ml
pH: 3.15
Alcohol: 11.4% alcohol by volume
Residual Sugar: 2.01 g/100ml


Winemaker's Comments

The 2008 Cypress Vineyards White Zinfandel has an attractive rosy-pink color with bright aromas of fresh strawberries, lychee, watermelon and cotton candy.  It is deliciously refreshing in its style of strawberry and melon fruit flavors, crisp acidity and hint of spritz, to balance its touch of residual sugar. Enjoy with barbecued chicken, salmon or as an ideal picnic-quaffing wine.

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2005 J. Lohr Cuvée St.E

The inspiration for J. Lohr Cuvée St. E comes from the Grand Cru wines of St. Emilion from the Right Bank of Bordeaux. These memorable wines are composed primarily of Cabernet Franc and Merlot, with touches of Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Petit Verdot. We give ourselves the freedom to emulate these great wines without the restrictions of varietal percentages, instead keenly focusing on the texture and complexity of the blend that nature delivers with each vintage.

 


VINTAGE
The 2005 vintage proved a remarkable challenge for our J. Lohr Cuvée program. Despite a return to healthy rainfall, berry size was larger than average in 2005, which delayed ripening. We bled our best blocks of Bordeaux varietals to concentrate the flavors, but with the exception of Cabernet Franc, the sole cuvée to meet our quality standards was Cuvée St. E. Cabernet Franc typically is one of the first Bordeaux varietals to ripen, and although finicky, continues to surprise us with its consistent finish each year as one of our top wines.


TECHNICAL DATA

Origin: Paso Robles
Composition: 45% Cabernet Franc, 44% Petit Verdot, 5.6% Cabernet Sauvignon, 5.4% Merlot
Harvest Dates: Cabernet Franc - October 3rd, 2005
Petit Verdot – September 24, 2005
Process: Harvest late-morning, destemmed and crushed to stainless steel fermenters
Harvest Chemistries: 25.7º Brix average, pH=3.59, Total Acidity=0.45 g/100 ml
Vinification:  
Yeast: Lalvin D254
Fermentation: Stainless steel fermented
Temperature: 87ºF
Extended Maceration: 7 Days
Malolactic: Inoculation in stainless steel and completion in 100% New French oak barrels.
Maturation: 21 Months in 80% New French oak barrels
Barrel Type: 80% New French oak barrel Bordeaux Chateau Ferré-style barrels (60.9 gallons)
Forests: Center of France
Cooper(s): Tonnellerie Sylvain, Tonnellerie Vicard and Tonnellerie Bel Air, Bordeaux, France
Post-Maturation: Bulldog rack from barrels, membrane filtered to bottle
Bottling Date: July 16, 200
Bottle Aging: 13 months in bottle prior to release
Bottling Chemistries:
pH: 3.65
Total Acidity: 0.65 g/100
Alcohol: 14.99% by volume
Production 1,200 6-bottle cases

WINEMAKER'S COMMENTS
The 2005 J. Lohr Cuvée St. E is dark red-purple in color with aromas of sour cherry, coffee and violet, with touches of chocolate, vanilla, honey and toasted oak from twenty one months aging in new French oak barrels. The wine displays the true varietal nature of Cabernet Franc, with ample weight and mid to rear structure from both the fruit and the maturation time. On release, this wine will already have one year of bottle age but will develop additional complexity well into the future. In its youth, it should be enjoyed with pan-seared filet mignon, or ribeye steak with a berry-infused reduction sauce. We recommend decanting one hour prior to serving. Jeff Meier, winemaker


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2007 J. Lohr Gesture Mourvèdre

The 2007 vintage was largely defined by a shortage of winter rainfall which was just 40% of normal. This resulted in intense fruit with 10-20% lower yields than 2005 and 2006 in general. Seasonal summer heat spikes occurred earlier than normal, before the fruit had softened at veraison. The daily maximum temperature exceeded 100 degrees only three times between veraison and harvest in this vineyard, which allowed slow, even flavor and color development in this late ripening Rhône variety native to Spain.


VINEYARDS

The Mourvèdre for this wine was grown in the Gravity Hills Vineyard, located in the Willow Creek district on the western edge of the Paso Robles AVA. These ten-year-old vines are planted on a steep, southwest facing, limeshale hillside. The 23% slope in this block makes just walking the vineyard very difficult. Our farming plan brings the crop to one cluster per shoot for this large-clustered variety, which requires trimming off the wings and the lower third of the clusters shortly after set to intensify flavor and color. We hand-harvested into half-ton bins on October 31st. Weather was ideal for bringing about full ripeness in 2007, and the final picking decision was predicated on a moderation of fruit acidity just before picking.

We used 15% Syrah clone 877 from block 1 of Terra Bella Vineyard to round out this varietal blend. Located at 1800 feet elevation within the warmer Adelaida district of the Paso Robles AVA, this fruit was picked on October 11th. Terra Bella Vineyard has quickly attracted the attention of Rhône-style winemakers since its development in 2001.


TECHNICAL DATA

 

Origin: Gravity Hills and Terra Bella Vineyards
Varietal: 85% Mourvèdre, 15% Syrah
Brix at Harvest: 28° Brix average
Total Acidity: 0.70 g/100 ml
pH at Bottling: 3.50
Alcohol: 15.96% by volume
Residual Sugar: 0.15 g/100ml
Vinification: After de-stemming, the berries were sorted on our VB Mistral system. Cold soaked fruit was fermented in open top tanks with a gentle punch-down regime. After fermenting to dryness in tank, this wine underwent malolactic fermentation in barrel.
Maturation: 15 months barrel aging in one and two-year-old French oak.
Bottling Date: March 17th, 2009; 392 cases produced.

Winemaker's Comments

Mourvèdre is generally utilized as a blending variety to contribute “bass notes” to Rhône-style wine blends. Bottled as a standalone varietal, Mourvèdre can often deliver gamey, tannic wines with earthy overtones… not the case here in our debut 2007 J. Lohr Gesture Mourvèdre. Immediately after pressing, this wine offered such nice black fruit aromatics of berry and cherry and wonderfully voluminous, yet velvety mid-palate weight that we decided to release it as a varietal offering to complement pan-seared pepper steak with mushrooms.

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2007 J. Lohr Gesture Syrah

The 2007 vintage was largely defined by a shortage of winter rainfall which was just 40% of normal. This resulted in intense fruit with 10-20% lower yields than 2005 and 2006 in general. Seasonal summer heat spikes occurred earlier than normal, before the fruit had softened at veraison. The daily maximum temperature exceeded 100 degrees only three times between veraison and harvest at this vineyard, which preserved the fruit aromatics and soft tannins.


VINEYARDS
Terra Bella Vineyard is located at 1,800 foot elevation within the Adelaida district of the Paso Robles AVA. Blocks 2 and 6 planted to Syrah clone 877 were the top performers for us and were used to create this wonderful wine. Terra Bella Vineyard has attracted a lot of attention from luxury winemakers since its development in 2001.


TECHNICAL DATA

 

Origin: Terra Bella Vineyard
Varietal: 100% Syrah
Brix at Harvest: 27.8° Brix average
Total Acidity: 0.69 g/100 ml
pH at Bottling: 3.49
Alcohol: 15.39% by volume
Residual Sugar: 0.21 g/100ml
Vinification: After destemming, the berries were sorted on our VB Mistral system. Cold soaked fruit was fermented in half ton bins with a gentle punch-down regime. Malolactic fermentation in barrel.
Maturation: 15 months barrel aging in French oak (25% new).
Bottling Date: March 17th, 2009; 233 cases produced.

Winemaker's Comments

A truly top-tier Syrah is defined not just by dark fruit aroma and seductive oaky flavor, but also by an invitingly plush mouth feel. My earliest tasting notes taken during the debut vintage of 2007
J. Lohr Gesture Syrah identified this wine for its dense flavors and soft, voluminous palate. We nurtured the blend through aging with sequential movements from newer to older cooperage over time to limit and integrate oak components and to preserve freshness of fruit. My bet is that this wine will showcase its fruit best with 2 to 5 years of bottle age and will make an excellent accompaniment to braised veal shanks.

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2007 J. Lohr Gesture GSM

The 2007 vintage was largely defined by a shortage of winter rainfall which was just 40% of normal. This resulted in intense fruit with 10-20% lower yields than 2005 and 2006 in general. Seasonal summer heat spikes occurred earlier than normal, before the fruit had softened at veraison. The daily maximum temperature exceeded 100 degrees only three times between veraison and harvest at these sites, which helped to maintain the freshness of fruit and soft mouthfeel which is the signature of this debut Rhône blend inspired by our friends in the south of France.


VINEYARDS
The source of the Grenache and Mourvèdre components of this blend is the Gravity Hills Vineyard, located in the Willow Creek district on the western edge of the Paso Robles AVA. These ten-year old-vines are planted on a steep, southwest facing, limeshale hillside. The 23% slope in these blocks makes just walking the vineyard very difficult. Our farming plan brings the crop to one cluster per shoot. These large-clustered varieties require trimming off the wings and the lower third of the clusters shortly after set to intensify flavor. Both varieties were hand harvested into half-ton bins on October 31st. Weather was ideal for bringing about full ripeness in 2007, and the final picking decision was predicated on a moderation of fruit acidity just before picking.


TECHNICAL DATA

 

Origin: Gravity Hills and Terra Bella Vineyards
Varietal: 50% Grenache, 38% Syrah, and 12% Mourvèdre
Brix at Harvest: 28° Brix average
Total Acidity: 0.71 g/100 ml
pH at Bottling: 3.42
Alcohol: 15.88% by volume
Residual Sugar: 0.22 g/100ml
Vinification: After destemming, the berries were sorted on our VB Mistral system. Cold soaked fruit was fermented in open top tanks with a gentle punch-down regime. One third of Grenache was fermented in new Francois Frères barrels with heads removed. Malolactic fermentation was completed in barrel.
Maturation: 15 months barrel aging in one and two-year-old French oak.
Bottling Date: March 17th, 2009; 609 cases produced.

Winemaker's Comments

We are pleased with how the farming, winemaking and aging came successfully together to preserve and showcase the fresh, wild berry fragrance of the Grenache fruit in the debut release of 2007 J. Lohr Gesture GSM. The Syrah component has brought body, depth and dark berry fruit notes to the mid-palate, while Mourvèdre has provided volume and black pepper spice to the finish. With proper storage, the fruit character will likely peak after two or three winters in the cellar, and the phenolic structure will continue to evolve and soften over the next decade.     Enjoy this Rhône red blend with braised or roasted duck.

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