Tasting Note                          

91+     2006 Ridge Pagani Ranch       1/19/09 ($35)

88% Zin, 7% Alicante Bouschet, 3% PS, 2% Carignane  14.8% alc
Color: Deep purple garnet. (3.0) Bouquet: Briar, smoke and game complement tart black cherry and concentrated Zinberry fruit. (3.5) Body: Light heavyweight with excellent tart acidity and fruit, also tannin and oak. (3.0) Flavor: Parallels bouquet, but a little more restrained at present. (3.0) Finish: Parallels flavor, with some bitterness from oak. (3.0)
Overall: This is bigger than either the '04 or '05, with a lot of briary spice. It also has some fierce youthful acidity (I like this a lot) propelling excellent Zinberry fruit. I do find the oak to be slightly overdone, adding some bitterness in the finish and getting slightly in the way of the usual old vines complexity, but this has the structure (including tannin) to take it and should integrate in the next few years. At its best in 3-6 years? I can't help to think that less oak would make the old vines fruit sing more, but only time will tell. (15.5)