Given our yields ran counter to most of the valley, the resulting wines reflect the density that small crops are capable of. Is the 2005 Zinfandel the darkest, richest, sappiest, most forward Outpost yet? We’re not sure it’s up to us to say. It’s blacker hued this year for sure with a strong streak of blackberry cream that usually takes a few years in bottle to develop. The brambly spice/pepper combo is present as always but this year’s version seems to strike a balance between fruit and spice much earlier than previous editions. The fruit profile also leans more toward black than red which tends, and maybe it’s just psychological, to translate as richer and more forward. Crop levels could also be behind this or full physiological maturity through true ripening. In truth it’s probably elements of all of the above.
Outpost was established in 1998 with the vision of producing wines that are a living, breathing embodiment of this magical place. Truly one of the world’s great Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel growing regions, the unique terroir of the Outpost vineyards – the hard, rocky red soil, high altitude, gentle cooling breezes and sunny western exposure – produces fruit of incredible intensity and richness, with a distinctive spice you simply cannot find anywhere else. Capturing the essence of the land’s rugged terrain, Outpost creates world-class 100% varietal bottlings of Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Petite Sirah and Grenache from our own hand-cultivated, organically farmed 28 acre estate vineyard. We also produce a 100% Cabernet Sauvignon and ‘Immigrant’ red blend, a combination of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc, from our 9 acre True vineyard.
Outpost grapes are harvested late in the season – by hand, at dawn – to preserve the full intensity and distinctive spicy character of the mountain fruit. The grapes are processed with as little manipulation as possible. Grapes from each block within the vineyard are fermented separately so that our winemaking team can be very selective about the lots that comprise the final blend. Wines are neither fined nor filtered allowing for the full expression of the vintages’ potential.
33% new French oak barrels, 67% 1-3 year old barrels