A. Rafanelli

Unfiltered Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel

9.46 ratings
9.21 pro ratings
Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County, California, USA
Zinfandel
Lamb, Chicken, Turkey, White Rice, Pasta, Potato, Herbs, Mushrooms, Soft Cheese, Chili & Hot Spicy, Tomato-Based, Duck, Exotic Spices, Beans & Peas, Hard Cheese, Pork, Baking Spices, Pungent Cheese, Beef, Onion, Shallot, Garlic
Top Notes For
Jay Kline

Splash decanted and then poured back into the bottle about 5 hours prior to dinner. This is my first impression of the 2021 Zinfandel which is even more exciting than usual because the 2020 vintage was skipped due to the LNU Lightning Complex fires which rendered that crop a write-off. The wine pours a deep ruby color with a translucent core moving towards a magenta edge and a slightly watery rim. Medium+ viscosity and moderate staining of the tears. There seems to be some sediment already, however this is not uncommon with bottles of Rafanelli both young and old. On the nose, the wine is clean although I do detect some VA, well within the “charming” range. Very expressive fresh red and black fruits, primarily brambles: Marionberry, ripe blackberry fruit, and raspberries. These are accompanied by white pepper and soft baking spices. On the palate, the wine is dry with medium tannin and medium+ acid. Confirming the notes from the nose. Alcohol is medium+ but not out of balance. Finish is medium. As usual, these wines upon release tend to be super primary but I like what I’m experiencing! Personally, I would recommend some patience when drinking these young. While they are no-doubt good, they tend to fill out with some time on their side in the cellar. Best after 2024 and should drink well through 2035. Oh…and this was an awesome pairing with grilled rack of lamb.

Splash decanted and then poured back into the bottle about 5 hours prior to dinner. This is my first impression of the 2021 Zinfandel which is even more exciting than usual because the 2020 vintage was skipped due to the LNU Lightning Complex fires which rendered that crop a write-off. The wine pours a deep ruby color with a translucent core moving towards a magenta edge and a slightly watery rim. Medium+ viscosity and moderate staining of the tears. There seems to be some sediment already, however this is not uncommon with bottles of Rafanelli both young and old. On the nose, the wine is clean although I do detect some VA, well within the “charming” range. Very expressive fresh red and black fruits, primarily brambles: Marionberry, ripe blackberry fruit, and raspberries. These are accompanied by white pepper and soft baking spices. On the palate, the wine is dry with medium tannin and medium+ acid. Confirming the notes from the nose. Alcohol is medium+ but not out of balance. Finish is medium. As usual, these wines upon release tend to be super primary but I like what I’m experiencing! Personally, I would recommend some patience when drinking these young. While they are no-doubt good, they tend to fill out with some time on their side in the cellar. Best after 2024 and should drink well through 2035. Oh…and this was an awesome pairing with grilled rack of lamb.

Apr 3rd, 2023
Brandon Boesch

So good. One of my faves.

So good. One of my faves.

Dec 8th, 2023
Raul Puga

Still one of my all time favorite wines

Still one of my all time favorite wines

Sep 26th, 2023
Sanjay Singh

Sanjay had this 3 months ago

Sanjay had this 3 months ago

Dec 9th, 2023
Jenna Fussell

Jenna had this 3 months ago

Jenna had this 3 months ago

Nov 23rd, 2023
Brian Pitz

Brian had this 9 months ago

Brian had this 9 months ago

May 27th, 2023