With a gorgeous dark ruby color, and intense aromas of briary black cherry and raspberry mingled with hints of cedar, sarsaparilla, and rhubarb, this 2010 Carneros Pinot Noir is drinking beautifully right now and should age gracefully for many years to come.
In 1969, two aerospace engineers Norman deLeuze and Gino Zepponi along with their families turned their entrepreneurial enthusiasm toward winemaking. It was the early pioneer days of the California wine industry. Their founding concept was to produce world-class chardonnay and pinot noir reminiscent of France's renowned Burgundy wines. They achieved this endeavor by using grapes from the cool Carneros regions of Napa and Sonoma. The namesake ZD Wines highlights the initials of the founding partners' last names, as well as Zero Defects, an acronym for a quality control program during the "space race" that Norman and Gino worked under while at AeroJet in Sacramento, CA. Norman's wife, founding partner Rosa Lee deLeuze chides that ZD also stands for the names of her two cats, Zesty and Delightful. With over forty years of history, today ZD represents world class winemaking of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon in the heart of Napa Valley. The 2010 harvest reminded everyone that Mother Nature is always in charge. A cool, wet spring set flowering and fruit set back by at least two weeks, followed by a cooler than normal June/July and then a two day heat spike in August that wiped out previous heat records and about 20% of our Pinot Noir crop. Needless to say, there were many sleepless nights for everyone. But, as always, patience was rewarded in the end, and a somewhat smaller pinot crop ripened perfectly through September and when Jim Haire arrived on Oct 5th with the first pick of our organically farmed Clone 667 Carneros Pinot Noir, ZD was reminded once again why Carneros produces some of the best Pinot Noir in the world.