Oenologist: Gerard Zanzonico
Vinification: the grapes are harvested when they have reached their optimum flavor development and ripeness. They’re picked early morning in cooler temperatures. In the cellar, the grapes are hand sorted, de-stemmed, and cold-soaked in stainless steel tanks for five days. The “free run”, or highest quality wine, is then drained off of the skins. This free-run wine is pumped into barrels for aging and remains in the barrel until it is ready to be bottled. This Syrah was created with only free-run wine. No press wine is used in this process.
14 months in French oak, 25% new barrels, 75% single-use barrels
Alcohol Grade: 13.9%
Size: 750 ml
The Producer: Vinos Zanzonico
Vinos Zanzonico is a family project winemaker Gerard Zanzonico and his wife Patricia Zanzonico.
Gerard had a 40-year-long career as a Napa Valley winemaker. He spent about half that time at Chateau Montelena. He was part of an all-star staff that helped elevate this celebrated Napa institution to rare heights.
Then he went on to leave his mark as a winemaker at Stonegate Winery, Staglin Family Vineyard, and Del Dotto Vineyards. Along the way Gerard worked with a lot of nice folks…he also made a lot of world-class wine. Four of those wines merited one hundred point scores from wine critic Robert Parker.
In 2015 the passion that drove Gerard about Napa dimmed a bit. It was time for him to leave Napa behind, but he wasn’t done with wine altogether. He was doing some consulting in Baja California, Mexico. The people there had two things Gerard most admired about winemaking: desire and passion.
So in 2019 Gerard, his wife and partner Patricia, and their dog Misty moved to Ensenada. They launched their brand Vinos Zanzonico with a small production of Chardonnay, Nebbiolo, and Syrah.
Their production is about four hundred cases a year.