Our family’s Rockpile Ridge Vineyards are located at nearly 1,200 ft elevation in the Rockpile appellation. The Cemetery block gets its name from the unusual outcropping of rock at the bottom of the vineyard that resembles giant headstones. This area of the ranch has been called the Cemetery for over 140 years, dating back to when we ran sheep on the property. The Cemetery Vineyard is planted in serpentine and shale based soils which is a result of straddling the Rodgers Creek Fault, one of the more active earthquake faults in Northern California. With a southwestern sun exposure, 15 to 20 degree slope and poor soil composition, the wine is everything you might expect: intense, powerful and complex.
There is no doubt that 2009 was one of the best vintages for Zinfandel in the last ten years, and the Cemetery Vineyard is no exception. The extremely small crop was a function of three years of drought, resulting in incredibly intense flavors and great structure. The warmer than average growing season yielded ripe fruit, and the nose is everything you would expect: fresh berry cobbler, raspberry jam, hints of black pepper and sweet French oak. Lush and full on the front palate, the tannins are supple and round throughout. The rich cobbler flavors dominate the mid palate, and the finish is characterized by spice and mineral notes. Typical of the Cemetery Vineyard, this wine will age beautifully for the next five to seven years and probably much longer for those who like your Zinfandels a little long in the tooth.
Winery Founded: 1998 Winery Location Region: Northern Sonoma Cases Produced: 10,000 Winery Open for Tasting: Yes Winery Charges for Tasting: Yes; $$5 & $10 * All tastings complimentary for Wine Club Members. We offer a complimentary $5 tasting to visa signature card holders. Retail Sales at Winery: Yes Offers Online Sales: Yes * Check our winery's website for details. Has a Wine Club: Yes * We offer three levels of Club Membership. Please check our website for information or contact the winery directly. Offers Winery Tours: By Appt. Only Offers Vineyard Tours: Yes Food Available at Winery: No Has a Picnic Area: Yes * We have two large picnic tables on our patio and numerous adirondack chairs on our lawn. Offers a Meet the Winemaker Tour: By Appt. Only * If you are intersted in a private tour and tasting with our winemaker please contact our Director of Hospitality at the winery. Offers a Barrel Tasting: By Appt. Only * Please contact our Director of Hopspitality to set up a barrel tasting.