9 Fascinating Facts About Petite Sirah

Posted in: Wine in the Glass
By Robert Johnson, Editor
Jun 30, 2011 - 9:00 AM

  1. There is nothing  "petite" about Petite Sirah. This is a big, inky monster of a wine.
  2. The first plantings in California date back to the 1880s. Only a handful of other varieties can make that claim.
  3. It's not unusual for Petite Sirah to be used as a blending wine to "beef up" other varieties, particularly in lesser vintages.
  4. Many vintners blend a small amount with their Zinfandel bottlings, even in strong vintages.
  5. It's possible that Petite Sirah is distantly related to Syrah, but there's no question they are two entirely different varieties.
  6. Three venerable California wineries have long been champions of Petite Sirah: Parducci, Foppiano and Concannon.
  7. There are approximately 3,500 acres of the variety planted in Argentina--about the same acreage as in California.
  8. Petite Sirah can be every bit as ageworthy as Cabernet Sauvignon. Many have been known to age gracefully for more than a quarter-century.
  9. Petite Sirah is one of the few wines that pairs well with vegetarian fare. Eggplant lasagna and grilled mushrooms are sublime culinary partners.

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