Wine Of The Week; 2007 Rosenblum Cellars Zinfandel Rockpile Road Vineyard

Every Thursday I feature a wine I particularly enjoy, whether it’s something new and different, is a great value, or from a producer worth checking out.  For this week, my Wine Of The Week is the 2007 Rosenblum Cellars Zindandel Rockpile Road Vineyard

The Winery

Rosenblum Cellars is an urban winery located in Alameda, CA.  It was founded by Kent Rosenblum, a veterinarian in 1978.  In 2008 it was sold to beverage giant Diageo.   Rosenblum made their reputation making premium Zinfandel but they also make Rhone varietals.  Their 2003 Rockpile Road Zinfandel was the #3 wine in the Wine Spectator Top 100 wines of 2005 when Jeff Cohn (who went on to found JC Cellars) was the winemaker.  It was an amazing accomplishment because before then no Zinfandel from California had cracked the Top 10!

I don’t recall how my wife and I discovered Rosenblum, but we were in the Rosenblum Cellars wine club for years. It was our first wine club, so I have many fond memories.  It’s where my wife learned to love Petite Sirah (she used to be like Miles in “Sideways” except it as…”I am not drinking Petite Sirah!!”, instead of Merlot), and the wine club release parties were fantastic…they busted out all their wines ( I remember going to one release party where there must have been 25-30 wines to try!  One might say Rosenblum is also where I learned to pace myself!).  We also made some enduring friendships (Kenny, Miguel and others) there.  Not too long after the winery was sold to Diageo though, we decided to leave the wine club.  It was a combination of factors, but I mostly chalk it up to our palate’s evolving, and being in the ‘promiscuous” phase of our wine journey.

The Wine

The grapes for this wine were sourced from Rockpile Road Vineyard, an iconic Zinfandel vineyard situated in the Rockpile AVA, and owned by Jack Florence, Jr

The vineyard sits at 1,100 feet above Lake Sonoma, and is situated in a unique microclimate with moderate temperatures, high winds, and lack of fog, all of which present an optimal environment for producing great Zinfandel fruit. .

Here’s what Rosenblum Cellars says about the wine…

A deep, purple hue leads ultra-ripe blackberry, boysenberry, briar and cocoa aromas in our 2007 Rockpile Road Zinfandel. Across the midpalate, a complex layering of rich, dark fruit develops, balanced by complex wood tannins that flank the tongue and pick up bright currant notes through the lengthy finish. “A wine with shoulders…”

Alas, this is my last bottle from the stellar 2007 vintage!

Wine of the Week; Rosenblum Cellars 2007 Rockpile Zinfandel
Rosenblum Cellars 2007 Rockpile Zinfandel

My tasting notes follow:

Nearly opaque violet color with kirsch, vanilla spice, and a hint of violet aromas. On the palate, it’s fruity, but well-balanced and silky smooth with sweet soft tannins, and surprisingly good acidity. It’s medium-bodied with black cherry, blackberry, cassis, vanilla spice and a hint of chocolate flavors Medium-long finish

Rating: Highly Recommended. It’s drinking beautifully now!

Pair with: Carne Asada Tacos, Fajitas, Red bean and rice, burgers, BBQ, grilled pizza  or for a twist smoked Ahi Tuna!

The Wine Geek Stuff:

  • Alcohol: 15.3%
  • Closure: Cork
  • AVA: > CaliforniaSonoma CountySonoma Valley>Rockpile
  • Grape Varieties: 100% Zinfandel
  • Cooperage: 40% French oak; 60% American oak – 40% new for 14 months
  • Retail: Unknown – I purchased for $28
  • Cases produced: Unknown
  • Drink: now – 2015

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  1. Rich Reader says:

    2007 was a great year for Rockpile Road, and Rosenblum certainly knew how to honor it. I love this recommendation, even though it’s getting harder to find in the stores.

  2. Cliff says:

    I also liked the 2007 vintage of this wine, maybe too much. I ended up buying a case of the 2008 vintage (note when the winery was sold) and it’s just not the same wine, not even close. No wonder I was able to buy it for about $15 a bottle. It just lacks the richness, balance, and flavor of the older vintages.

    I still long for a return to form from an old favorite.

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