Jeff’s Corner

Well, Well, Well,
Today’s Petite Sirah Day;
It’s black and brooding,
Volatile and moody,
And oozing despair.

I suppose this is a pretty melodramatic intro to our new 2018 Petite Sirah, but then Petite Sirah has always been, to me, a very dejected and disconsolate grape. It also happens to make my favorite wine.

Petite Sirah is the infamous idiot bastard son of Syrah, and he is one of the darkest, scariest, mysteriously secretive and seductive entities ever to stalk the wine bars of Lyon. Known by many aliases as his legend grew, his most common sobriquet globally is “Durif,” while in the United States he most often goes by the confusing moniker “Petite Sirah.”

Spawned in the Rhone Valley of France in the commune of Tullins by Dr. Francios Durif in the 1860’s, the little bastard Petite was the result of pollen from some Syrah having its way with the flowers of a Peloursin vine, a grape now close to extinction. Like its name, Petite is a small grape with thick, dark skins that promise a wine with major attitude.

And whoo whee, Granny, our new 2018 Petite Sirah sure delivers that attitude with a roundhouse, knock-out punch with a 15.5% ABV and a blend of 95% Petite Sirah and 5% Cabernet Sauvignon.

The extraordinary color of this wine is an impregnable purple/black (like squid ink) that captures our eye even before it hits the bottom of our glass. It is scary dark, and like Macbeth says, “Stars, hide your fires, let not light see my black and deep desires.”

The aromas are incredibly complex, with layers of ripe blueberry, black plum, blackberry jam and licorice, laced with cracked black pepper, dark chocolate, espresso and sweet vanilla.  

The palate is well-balanced with firm tannins and a bright acidity that give way to a lush, lingering finish. Jason and his gang have achieved the elusive task of creating an opulent, jammy wine that avoids being overripe.

Let’s pair this monster wine with a giant platter of Texas Hill Country BBQ that includes smoked brisket, ribs, jalapeño sausage, and all the traditional sides of pinto beans, potato salad, white bread and blackberry cobbler.

Now, before we sign off, be sure and check out the really cool photo brought to you by my “editor” Chelsea Scott. Notice anything new? Well, you just got a sneak preview of our elegant new GCV wine label. More about this to come…