Monte Rio Cellars, Petite Sirah, Lodi CA, 2019
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Located on Scottsdale Rd., the Bains Vineyard Petite Sirah was planted by Anagnos six years ago on a modified vertical trellis. Here the 100% whole cluster/carbonic/native yeast/neutral wood methodology yields a typically varietal opaque/purplish ruby color and peppery/tobacco-like aroma, with an herbal/dried rose petal undertone reflecting Cappiello’s early-pick philosophy (yielding an exceptionally “light,” by Petite Sirah standards, 13% alcohol). While not the big, jammy, oaky style most Petite Sirah aficionados may look for, this bottling offers the dense and muscular feel of the varietal in more of a balanced configuration that can also be described as elegant (and “elegant” is never mentioned in the same sentence as California-grown Petite Sirah).