1996 J Fritz Winery 80-year old vines Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley Rogers’ Reserve

by Stevie on March 16, 2011

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1996 J Fritz Winery 80-year old vines Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley Rogers’ Reserve

1996 J Fritz Winery 80-year old vines Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley Rogers’ Reserve

This was another exciting zinfandel find by our BFF, Chris S. He’s already wowed us with an older Hop Kiln zinfandel as well as a late-harvest zin from the same maker. This J Fritz, then, is part of an intriguing series of aged zinfandels.

I’ve been trying to learn more about these wines as they age, both by tasting them (the preferred method) and reading up. From what I’ve gleaned so far, they take on more of the character of cabernet sauvignon. That’s what we thought of this one.

It appears that the winery has changed names. Jay Fritz’s son, Clayton, now operates the place. Located in Dry Creek, the web site refers to it as “Fritz” and “Fritz Underground Winery.” So I guess that the name has changed, too. They also have an outpost in San Francisco at Press Club.

This was a translucent aged brownish red. It smelled like late summer in California: scorched earth, eucalyptus and cedar. Medium bodied and delicate, this was very smooth with a long, long finish. Rich red fruit supported by crisp mineral notes lead to an enveloping cherry cough drop flavor that was quite nice. “It’s good!” we all agreed.

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