Big plush fruit. Fruit-FWD and plummy, bright drizzly jam, giant clusters of bright, sharp concentrated berry with a little more firm clay bank and running water lurking than bramble & bog. A layer of soot and dust lingers overhead, and with plenty of air more and more briar and mineral come to the forefront–the whole thing becomes awash in petrichor, the absolute baby-baby brunt of flesh and alcohol a backdrop to infinity.
In the mouth, oh boy. This is one of those classic PS’s that–at this age–drinks like a barrel-sample. A fat chunk of juicy berry greets you for a moment before that glorious wall of Petite Sirah youth confronts EVERYTHING. Pitchy and black, magnificently tannic, sweet and wretchedly acidic, it WILL put hair on your chest.
The tiny slip of florescent purple rim tells you all you need to know on this black thing, right back to the chubby globules bristling with heat in the finish. It manages that Petite Sirah shape-shift I don’t know of too many other grapes can pull off: Just an absolute BRICK TO THE FACE of structure and black fruit so ridiculously inter-wound BUT STILL struggling to expose itself AND YET–in spite of all that seemingly never-approachable front–there’s a delicacy to it. Soft curves. Flowers. A well-seasoned cast iron skillet wielded by at ruffled gingham apron. How does PS do that?
They’ve done the best they can to make this approachable for the drink-it-now crowd but seriously this thing needs years to rest. And that’s where I am thankful for my following, because they GET that–without it being a downer. They aren’t buying Prisoner for dinner. You need at least a six-pack of these things to witness California Petite Sirah MAGIC over the next 20 years.
2018 MOUNTAIN TIDES WINE CO Petite Sirah Palmero Family VYD Borden Ranch AVA Lodi California 14.4