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RIDGE from the 1970’s to today

May 30, 2014 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

Twin Cities Wine Education LLC presents a once in a lifetime opportunity
A fascinating tasting going back to 1979

Recently Twin Cities Wine conducted two tastings that were simply a blast: the Five Decades of Georges de LaTour, as well as Wine Icons: Ridge Winery. At both tastings we popped bottles well over 20 years old (including one back to 1967) which led all attendees to sit in awe of just how good aged California wines can be. The bottle we opened at the Ridge tasting was a 1976 Ridge York Creek Zinfandel which was simply stunning (despite the bottle having a low fill and signs of leakage — I bought it relatively cheap sight unseen and it proved that you just don’t know if a bottle will be good or bad until you pop it). It showed the ageworthiness of the wines of this historic producer, and also debunked the idea that Zinfandel doesn’t age well.
The excitement and fascination with that wine in particular was palpable, and led me to acquire a range of fascinating wines from top sources around the country.
The RIDGE From the 1970’s to Today tasting will profile three flights of wine from the hands of winemaker Paul Draper, giving you an incredible perspective of this producer.
We’ll begin the night with a short overview of the Ridge winemaking history and philosophy, including a profile of Paul Draper and examination of his “pre-industrial” winemaking philosophy. This will form a basis of understanding the provenance of the wines we will be enjoying.
The first flight will examine Merlot in many forms, starting with the current release 2011 Estate Merlot from the Monte Bello property, followed by 1991 Santa Cruz Mountains Merlot (same vineyard as the 2011 — this will be a fascinating examination of what 20 years of aging does to a wine), plus 1991 and 1993 York Creek Merlot from Spring Mountain in Napa Valley. This flight will show several different sides of Merlot, from two distinct terroirs and a range of different vintages. I can’t wait!
We will continue with two Cabernet Sauvignon based wines: the 1982 Howell Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon from the historic Beatty Ranch, and 1984 Claret Langtry from Spring Mountain in Napa Valley. I’m extremely excited about both of these wines. The Cabernets from Howell Mountain are legendary for their longevity, and I’ve never had the opportunity to try one over 30 years old. The Claret Langtry is from a vineyard I’ve driven by a dozen times, on Langtry Road on my way to Cain Winery on Spring Mountain. We will use this flight to discuss the mountain ranges of Napa Valley, and the differences you can expect between the Maycamas Range to the west and the Vaca Range to the east. To add perspective to the flight, we will throw in a¬†current vintage Napa Valley Cabernet¬†from Spring Mountain AVA, and spend some time talking about this amazing yet often unvisited part of Napa Valley.
The final flight will shift us to Zinfandel, specifically from the Dusi Ranch of Paso Robles. We will taste the current release 2012 Ridge Dusi Zinfandel first, followed by the 1979 Zinfandel San Luis “Early Bottling” … this is bound to be a jaw dropping comparison and we will discuss the aspects that make some Zinfandels age and some not.
Seating is extremely limited. I hope you can join us for this historic wine tasting event.


May 30, 2014
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm


North Loop Wine and Spirits
218 North Washington Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55401 United States

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