UPDATE: We harvested Malbec for the Rosa Lee red this year. It has finished fermentation and will go to the barrel this week. It has deep dark color and surprising depth for this variety.
All of our Carneros Pinot Noir has been harvested and is finishing the malo-lactic fermentation in the barrel. We produced less than two tons per acre in our organic Carneros Estate vineyard and a little over two and one half tons to the acre from the Haire vineyard. The fruit came in fully mature with great balance.
We have been scrambling to bring in our Chardonnay. We harvested the last of our Carneros fruit just as the big storm rolled in. Our vineyards to the south missed the rains and are being harvested this week. We will bring in the last two blocks tomorrow to finish a spectacular Chardonnay Harvest.
We have said it many times; the toughest thing to do during the harvest is to wait. That is what we are continuing to do with most of our Cabernet Sauvignon. We have harvested two of our seven blocks. Those two vineyards traditionally ripen first and proved themselves again this year. The other sites are getting close but have not achieved the maturity that we need to make the rich wines we are known for. We rode through the rains of last week and came out of it this week to some appreciated dry weather. The fruit is sound and looking good but not quite to the maturity that we need. With more clouds looming on the horizon, we are looking beyond them to the expected clear weather ahead that will give us the last bit of ripening that is so important to our style of wines…Stay tuned!
ORIGINAL REPORT: 2010 Harvest at ZD Wines was kicked off on September 30th with six tons of Carneros Pinot Grigio ( our next white wine to be featured as the winery-only Rosa Lee program). The fruit was crushed, pressed, and put into stainless steel tanks for fermentation, which will result in producing a light, flavorful crisp white wine.
Close on its heels, was Carneros Pinot from two vineyards, including the ZD Carneros Estate Vineyard, which is organically farmed and certified. The growing season leading up to harvest has definitely thrown some curve balls, with cooler than normal temperatures, to a couple of days of extremely hot weather in August (resulting in sun damage), back to just below normal temperatures. The heat spike caused roughly 30 to 40 percent sun damage to Pinot Noir in the Carneros region. ZDs vineyard crews were sent through the rows of vines with visible damage, and dropped the fruit to the ground. The grapes that remained on the vines continued to ripen beautifully and are bound to produce well balanced and flavorful wines for the 2010 vintage.
Chardonnay and Cabernet grapes fared much better through the unusual weather patterns this growing season. With intensive farming and a long hang time (a result of a late harvest) they will produce intensely flavored and delicious wines.
With all of the activity in the cellar as grapes continue to be brought in, crushed, fermented, and put to barrels, there is a no better time to visit for a sneak peak at the art of ZD winemaking. Come meet Chris Pisani, winemaker, and the rest of the crew, and share a glass of some of the fruits of our labor from previous harvests!
– Robert deLeuze, Winemaster/CEO
For a frighteningly good holiday season, set aside the games and tricks and go straight for the ultimate “treat”. Released October 1st, ZD’s rich, decadent, bold new release wines are available for your ghoulish pleasure:
The 2007 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley is a wickedly good example of what the 2007 vintage had to offer. In addition to ZD’s organically farmed Rutherford Estate Vineyard, the fruit came from several small, intensely farmed vineyards in the eastern hills above Oakville. Each was fermented and barrel aged separately for one year before blending. The reserve blend was then aged for an additional two years in American Oak. Classic cassis, red plum and blackberry make up the core of dense fruit in this wine. Subtle hints of toasted nuts, anise, clove and sweet vanilla add to the complexity.
A Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon unlike any other produced in the world, Abacus XII is best described as a solera style blend of every vintage of ZD Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon ever produced. The term “solera” indicates that only a small portion of this wine is bottled each year. The remainder is returned to barrel to await an infusion of the next youthful vintage (each bottling will grow by one vintage). The twelfth bottling includes 18 consecutive vintages of ZD Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon (1992 - 2009). The medallion attached on the bottle depicts the first and last vintage. A truly unique offering.
Halloween. Thanksgiving. Birthdays. Anniversaries. This fall it’s time to celebrate and what better way to share the wine you love with family and friends then with a large format bottle? Large formats are ideal for any festive occasion (or just because!). Perfectly suited to sharing with a crowd; the 3L, for instance, holds roughly 24 glasses of wine. In your favorite varietals, ZD’s big bottles make a big impact.
Call today to find out more about our 9L, 5L, 3L and 1.5L bottles at 800 487 7757.
Bacon, Onion and Rye Bread Stuffing
with ZD 2008 40th Anniversary Pinot Noir
One 9-inch long loaf seeded rye bread, cute into 1-inch cubes
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large sweet onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 celery rib, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 teaspoon chopped sage
1 teaspoon thyme leaves
1/2 pound piece of slab bacon, sliced 1/2 thick and cut into 1/2-inch dice
2 1/2 cups chicken stock or low-sodium broth
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Preheat the oven to 375°. Lightly butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. On a large rimmed baking sheet, toast the rye bread cubes for about 15 minutes, tossing once halfway through, until lightly golden and dry. Transfer the bread to a large bowl.
In a skillet, melt the butter. Add the onion and celery; cook over moderate heat until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the sage and thyme and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Scrape into the bowl with the bread.
Wipe out the skillet. Add the bacon and cook over moderate heat until browned, about 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to the bowl with the bread. In a medium bowl, whisk the chicken broth with the egg. Pour over the bread mixture and add the kosher salt and pepper. Toss until the bread soaks up the liquid. Scrape into the prepared baking dish and cover with foil. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.
Bake the stuffing for about 30 minutes, until hot throughout. Remove the foil and bake for about 30 minutes longer, until the top is lightly golden. Serve hot or warm.
Note from deLeuze Family
A mild summer with more blankets than barbecues left our cellar crew with plenty of time to top off barrels, buff the stainless steel fermenting tanks to a shine, and get the facility ready for the arrival of grapes.
Now, with the descent of harvest upon us and truckloads of delicious ripe fruit being delivered to the winery’s back crush pad, the cellar has been kicked into high gear.
With the arrival of the first bins of grapes, our family gathers on the crush pad with ZD’s staff and offers a blessing for the new grapes, giving thanks for a successful harvest. It’s an annual tradition and one that puts everyone in the “Harvest” spirit.
We hope that you too will raise a glass and toast to Harvest, wine, family and friends. Be sure to stop by the winery during this time and take part in the excitement of “crush time” in the Napa Valley.
The deLeuze Family
NEWS & EVENTS
Vincenzo Wine Tasting
At the 14th Annual Vincenzo Wine Tasting & Auction, join Barbie Jamieson of ZD Wines for a gala evening benefiting Catholic Charities CYO Youth Housing Programs. Hosted at San Francisco’s City Hall, the evening will include exclusive tasting from premier wineries along with a gourmet dinner. An auction featuring rare wines and other unique items will also take place. community.ccyo.org
December 1 -2
Vintners Holiday Yosemite
Join ZD’s Founder, Rosa Lee deLeuze, and President, Brett deLeuze, for the 29th Annual Vintner’s Holiday event series. From terroir to table, participants in each session will have personal access to meet the winemakers, learn about the latest trends in viticulture, taste wines and enjoy a five-course candlelit finale dinner. ZD Wines will present Session VII alongside three other vintners for an unforgettable experience. T: 801 559 4884 or www.yosemitepark.com
To view more upcoming events, visit us online.