David Gates, vice president of vineyard operations at Ridge Vineyards is our source for everything Zinfandel, Carignane, and Petite Sirah as well as the winery's esteemed Monte Bello. These are the grapes most often used in their Zinfandel blends made at the Lytton Springs facility. Mr. Gates is quoted in this nice article from the Los Angeles Times concerning Zinfandel. The article explains why Zinfandel based blends are excellent wines, but are not as profitable - they are difficult to sell. We sometimes forget the wineries are businesses - the profit motive is a fact of life.
Morgan Twain-Peterson, left, makes a Bedrock Heirloom Wine that's half Zin. His dad, Joel Peterson, makes a Ravenswood wine labeled Zinfandel. (Robert Durell / For The Times)