2013RidgeHooker2013 Ridge Vineyards, Zinfandel, Hooker Creek, Sonoma Valley.
The first release of Hooker Creek is only available at the tasting room and through the Ridge wine club program, so be sure to get to Lytton Springs or trek up to Monte Bello and grab some of this rocking Zinfandel that comes from 80 year old vines in Sonoma Valley. The Hooker Creek 2013 is a thrilling glass of purpleness and a classic study in hedonism with a deep bluish/purple core and garnet edges it shines in light and delivers a light floral and red berry and cedary nose before an entry of black raspberry, plum, cherry and tangy currant fruits with a hint of pepper, laurel leaf and salted black licorice along with bitter chocolate, lavender and fig. Big and juicy at 14.7% this is not over the top thick or sweet, but certainly full and ripe with well judged tannins and smooth acidity, Ridge nailed this one, this is a fine California Zinfandel that should please anyone that opens it and it does have a tiny percentage of Alicante and Petite Sirah that adds to the overall old vine feel on the palate and has a typical Ridge field blend character. This Hooker Creek drinks fantastic in it’s youth, and in fact, while full of radiant flavor and expressive it feels balanced, poised and easy to quaff right now, I’d hold the more tightly wound Lytton Springs in the cellar a few more years and drink this and fruitier Pagaini Ranch sooner, even though I think the Hooker Creek has solid aging potential, as do most Ridge offerings, drink from 2016 to 2022. I confess to really, really enjoying this Zin, it reminds me of recent Bedrock bottlings and I hope it is part of Ridge’s lineup permanently, this is pure California in the bottle!
($32 Est.) 94 Points, grapelive

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