Macauley Vineyard2003 Zinfandel
Mac Watson has revived his family brand (wines once made by Ric Forman) and has employed childhood friend Kirk Venge to make his wines at the Venge Rossini Ranch near Howell Mountain. The fruit for this Zin was sourced from the Brown and Moss Creek vineyards in Chiles Valley and Capell Valley, east of Rutherford and Oakville, respectively.
Watson and Venge have used Hungarian and American oak to fashion a wine that is remarkably pretty and smooth with elegant blackberry flavors and texture with wonderful balance. Everything’s in check here with wonderful minerality and layers of complexity. Hold on to it for a couple of years and then drink it over the next decade-and-a-half. The price -- $28 -- ain’t bad either. (And never mind the 14.8 percent alcohol. It’s well integrated). The downside is that there were only 114 cases produced.
Reviewed February 28, 2006 by Alan Goldfarb.
Alan Goldfarb has been writing about and reviewing wine for 17 years. His reviews have been published in the St. Helena Star, San Jose Mercury, San Francisco Examiner, Decanter, and Wine Enthusiast, among others. Not once has he used a point system, star system, or an iconic symbol to quantify a wine. What counts in Mr. Goldfarb’s criteria when judging a wine is: how it tastes in the glass; is it well-constructed; its food compatibility; and presence of redeeming regional attributes.