Tasting Note                         

85+    2007 Ridge Paso Robles Zin     6/12/09 ($26)

100% Zin 14.5% alc
Color: Medium purple garnet. (2.5) Bouquet: Spicy briar and alcohol with oak-infused, grapy Zinberry fruit uplifted by chalky acidity. (3.0) Body: Middleweight with excellent acidity, but somewhat lacking in fruit. Acidity and alcohol stick out somewhat at this point. Lean, tart and mean with some buttery oak. (2.5) Flavor: Parallels bouquet, but less giving in fruit. (2.5) Finish: Parallels flavor with length, but very tart acidity lingers. (2.5)
Overall: This is lean and mean Zinfandel, not typical of the varietal. The meanness is not from tannin, but from acidity and alcohol. This could really use richer, more concentrated fruit. The saving graces here are precise, distinctive fruit and spicy, somewhat buttery oak, which buffer the meanness. This has a certain degree of balance that promises better things in the next 2-5 years. But for my palate, this is not worth the time and money, even though the quality is very good. It happens. Next vintage please. Or if you can't wait, just revisit any of the last 4 vintages, all were excellent. (13.0)