Petite Sirah, 2016. Nevada City Winery

Petite Sirah, 2016. Nevada City Winery

Item #: V1122R2
Vintage: 2016
Varietal: Petite Sirah
Vineyard/Appellation: Sierra Foothills
Color: Deep Purple
Nose: Bramble, Dark Cherry
Palate: A Blast of Earth
Finish: Imposing
Rating: 97
Cellaring/Serving Suggestions: Now thru 2023/Red Meat, Game/14.3% Alcohol by Volume

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Nevada City Winery opened its doors in 1980, 30 years after the previous winery. In other words, Nevada City wasn't high on everybody's list as a classic wine area. That didn't mean much to winemaker, Mark Foster, who crafted award winning wines for 29 years here until he retired in 2021.

He was replaced by Mark Hanifl who began his career in 1994 in Paso Robles. He then went to Sonoma and then Austria. We love this story because it says that Mark wanted to find out as much as possible regarding making wine. To do that you have to see how it's made elsewhere.

After returning to California he made wine in Sonoma, Napa, and Mendocino before settling in at Nevada City. His experience in Europe taught him that wines were made to drink, not discuss, rate or compare ad nauseum. He has certainly learned that lesson well.

Petite Sirah was so named, because it was thought to be a cousin to the Syrah grape of the Northern Rhone. It's nothing of the sort. It is the Durif grape from the Languedoc thought to be of mediocre quality. Fortunately, it does better in California than anywhere else as this beauty will attest. We always find it interesting that a grape can excel in an area that is not its native birthplace. Just look at how well Malbec does in Argentina.

Ours is a classic, sporting the bramble, earthy and licorice components tamed by dark cherry and wild strawberry. It's a classic BBQ wine.