Petite Sirah Is Dead

Deep clear garnet with acceptable bricking.  Moderate sed.  Butter and spice in the nose perfectly preluding deep cherry fruit.  Gobs of leather and a touch of tar together with a bright astringency make you know you are in for something not overwhelming, but special.

Like any wine of this age and provenance, you have to *reach* a little.  It is not something which will overwhelm in today’s standards of voluptuousness, but roundness reigns supreme.  It is still all there.  A shocking wine, through-and-through.  In the mouth, respectively thin of fruit, and nutty.  The aforementioned astringency translates immediately onto the tongue, but backed up with still-vibrant ripe fruit–but faded–more shocking acid and tannins still doing their job.  for those of you–like me–who still feel the turn of the century was ‘a few years ago’, let me remind you this is a THIRTY YEAR OLD WINE.  I have tasted NOTHING from the Petite Sirah Camp in the past 15 years which will be ANYTHING like this at this age.  Not even close.

I remember these wines.  Like Cornas, we hoped we would see the day of maturity, but wondered.  It does not fall apart, either.  It gets rounder and fuller with each passing minute.  Not a trace of oxidation or madeirization.  In the glass over two hours and still it keeps going, gaining complexity and elegance.  It is past its prime, there is no doubt.  It should have been drank 5 or 10 years ago, and probably even THEN, we would have said, “It will never last.”  Goes to show you never know until you do it.  What an amazing bottle.

1984 BELLVUE CELLARS Petite Sirah Napa Valley 12.0


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