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Jun 30, 2012 11:10 AM

TN: 2006 Storrs Winery Petite Sirah, Santa Cruz Mtns.

There is something of a debate going on (albeit quietly) in Petite Sirah circles regarding the STYLE in which Petite Sirah is and/or should be made. California's first Petite Sirah, the 1965 Concannon Petite Sirah from vineyards in Livermore, was full-bodied, spicy, but with a degree of finesse and layered complexity. On the other hand, some of the examples from the 1970s were big, highly extracted, tannic monsters -- so dark and inky in color, they would stain the glass as well as your teeth.

Which style is "correct"? Does it matter, as one as you enjoy the wine? That said, I confess I love the flavors and spice of Petite, but I want the wine to work well with the meal -- for me, that means it needs to be supple, to have some sense of balance and style.

The 2006 Storrs Petite Sirah (Santa Cruz Mountains AVA) is a dark, purple-violet colored wine, nearly opaque, with a full nose of black cherries, dark berries, pepper, spice, and hints of vanilla and saddle leather; on the palate, the wine is full-bodied, velvety in texture but with a core of finely grained tannins; there is ripe fruit and spice, which carries through the long, lingering, and flavorful finish.

Absolutely delicious!

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  1. Many years ago, I read some wine expert's opinion that petite sirah should be aged 10 years for optimum taste. For some reason, I began to put down a very few bottles and save them unitl 10 years past the vintage and then try them. I have been amazed at how rather simple often one dimensional wines gain complexity and subtlety through that aging.

    Have you ever heard such a thing? Am I delusional about the enhancement that aging seems to give?

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