Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County
A. Rafanelli is a great American story.
Alberto came to America in the early 1900's from Italy and set up shop as a wine grower and maker in and around Sonoma County. Since the 1950's, they have been premier growers in the Dry Creek Valley.
They are now in their third generation of family winemaker! First Alberto, then his son David, and now David's daughter, Shelley. They have each brought their own style into the winery: Alberto making Zinfandel, David making cabernet sauvignon and now Shelley with Merlot. With each generation, the scope of the winery expands with new bottlings and property...its caves grow deeper.
Zinfandel is also a great immigrant story. It was first known as Plavac Maili in Croatia, Primitivo in Italy's Puglia region, and somehow, it found its way to America. It is also thought to have been either Zierfandler (Grüner Sylvaner) or Croatian Czirifandli. Somehow, from the vineyards of the Hapsburgs, this grape made its way to California. An immigrant's grape brought on the back of immigrants and grown by immigrants in America.
The Rafanellis make, in my opinion, the best Zinfandel, period. It is elegant and not over extracted. It is honest to the characteristics of the varietal, and it is not over priced. Try it with your 4th of July BBQ, or with a little Pecorino, as Mr. Rafanelli suggests.
Marzolino Rosso Di Pienza
A fantastic sheeps milk cheese made each year in March (Marzo) from fresh sheeps milk. The town of Pienza is considered by some to have the best pecorino in Italy (especially the people of Pienza). It is lightly rubbed with salt and tomato juice to give it the red hue.
Strawberry and Meyer Lemon Marmalade
8oz for $12
Strawberries sourced from Jefe's garden in Shadow Hills and Meyer Lemons sourced from Santa Maria. All California grown and produced, just like the wine. Happy 4th!
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