The Vitone Family Verde Sole

Published April 4, 2013

The Sierra Foothills may hang out in your memory long after you’ve left. Years ago, gold rush enthusiasts may have taken all they could find but left a bounty of rich soil behind that make happy grapes. The slight elevation keeps grapes soaking in the sunshine and may also be what makes this region’s wines so richly complex yet elegantly smooth.

Because they are negociants, the Vitone Family that makes Verde Sole wines could get their grapes from anywhere yet they choose these historical and bountiful Sierra Foothills for good reason. It’s not only a love of this land or a distinctive palate. For them, making wine is also part of a family tradition and a taste will convince you of how passionate they are about cultivating a grape’s full potential in a bottle.

Their Zinfandel starts with that beautiful berry fragrance all zin lovers covet yet continues with more dark round berry body than light earthy red raspberry. It has enough earthiness but not too much to overwhelm its chocolate milk thickness. Its firm tannins make it ideal for a meaty barbecue but its long lanky finish keep you thinking about it.

The Verde Sole Petite Sirah quickly draws you in with a bright heavy aroma of cocoa, vanilla, and toasted caramel. Then, a layer of plum, cherry, and blueberry, takes over while the vibrant acidity and silky tannins bring you back for another sip. This is such a carefully balanced Petite Sirah yet so versatile it can playfully dance alone or effortlessly match up to your richest hearty meat dishes. Don’t be afraid of the inky dark varietal some call “blue tooth”; this one’s tannins are soft and supple enough to fool a zin, Grenache, or Pinot lover.

More from my appellation adventures in this region.


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