Ridge 2001 Zinfandel Pagani Ranch (Sonoma Valley) – 88% zinfandel, 8% alicante bouschet, 4% petite sirah. 15.4% alcohol, and brining every bit of that alcohol to the table on its eleventh birthday. This is pretty regularly my least favorite of Ridge’s “primary” zinfandel blends, though I suspect that the qualities that sometimes turn me off (excess alcohol, pruney fruit) are exactly what appeals to lovers of that periodically popular form of the grape. This is dark, grapey, plummy, and then it works itself into reduced boysenberry syrups and such that quickly reduce its appeal. The burn follows. I also wonder if holding it this long may have contributed to my ambivalence. (8/12)

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