Once & Future 2018 Zinfandel, Bedrock Vineyard, Sonoma Valley
Item Number: 14503
Sub Region: Sonoma
Appellation/AVA: Sonoma Valley
Estate Grown Wine: Yes
Vineyard Designation: Bedrock Vineyard
Type: Wine - Red
Bottle Size: 750 ml
Viticulture: Practicing Organic
Soil Type: Tuscan Red Hill series
Vintage Notes by Vinous 4/2020: "I was super-impressed with the 2018s from Joel Peterson's Once & Future. The 2018s are wonderfully vibrant, focused and full of character. In many ways, Peterson has returned to his roots from his early days at Ravenswood. The wines are made in open-top wood fermenters and handled minimally in the cellar. Quality is really driven by site, and no one knows these vineyards better than Joel Peterson. His boyish enthusiasm and humility are truly remarkable for someone who has had such a long and illustrious career. I can't recommend these wines highly enough." - Antonio Galloni
Joel's Tasting Notes: Intense, complex aromatics of ripe raspberry and baking spice, with a long, full, bright structured finish.
Vineyard Notes: Situated on the Agua Caliente Bench, Bedrock is one of the premier vineyard plots in Sonoma Valley. When Eugene Hilgard, the most important viticulture professor of his time, was asked in 1890 if any place in California could grow grapes to rival the great clarets of Europe, he unhesitatingly singled out this vineyard. Founded in 1854 by Generals “Fightin’ Joe” Hooker (just back from the Mexican-American War) and William Tecumseh Sherman (a San Francisco banker at the time), the spot has grown grapes for more than 150 years. Following the first phylloxera epidemic in the mid-1880s, it was replanted in 1888 by Senator George Hearst, a mining magnate and father of publisher William Randolph Hearst. In the early 1900s, Hearst’s widow Phoebe sold it to the California Wine Association, which made wine from it until Prohibition. In 1934, the vineyard was jointly purchased by the Domenici and Parducci families who ran the Valley of the Moon winery. When that relationship became acrimonious, the vineyard was split with the Parducci’s taking the winery and smaller land parcel, and the Domenici’s taking 152 acres that became as Madrone Ranch.
The Domenici’s sold the property to the Deininger/Peterson family in 2005. Joel renamed it Bedrock with a nod to its soil: Tuscan Red Hill series washed down from the adjacent Mayacamas Mountains to form the alluvial fan on which the vineyard is planted. Because the place had been cultivated harshly for 100 years, Joel broke up the pan with a mechanical spader and revitalized the soils with compost and cover crops of vetch, bell beans, and rye grass; the cobbly, well-drained loam, combined with long warm summer days and cool evening air flowing through the Bennett Valley Gap alongside Sonoma Mountain is superb for growing Zinfandel, a tradition we’ve maintained with old-school, head-pruned viticulture. The wines have an aromatic raciness and fine tannin structure that renders them elegant and long-lived.