Petite Sirah Unmasked

I apologize to those of you bored backwards out of your underpants with the previous technical discussion. Lest you imagine I spend all of my time on such technical matters, please check out my recent posts at Appellation America concerning Petite Sirah. There are two articles -- one popular, outlining the regional diversity we encountered in our tastings, and one more theoretical which speculates on the sources of regional diversity in the grape, and I believe offers useful framing of that discussion for other varietals.



Michael Gardner:


clark...I went to the linked article on PS at Appellation America and found your discussion regarding varieties, incident light, & heat fascinating (especially differences in the same variety say syrah, north to south in France and grenache as well).

How would such factors affect color development in Tempranillo and Sangiovese (two that I have a fairly warm CA foothill location), do you believe? They are planted on sandy loam in a north/south direction with VSP trellising...interested in your thoughts.


Dear Michael:

Great question. Wish I had a grat answer. Unforunately I've only been employing this tasting method at Appellation America since last August, and I frankly haven't gotten far enough into these two varieties to make very well qualified speculations on these two varieties. I will say that they both seem to respond well to some heat, and that well drained soils are a ls in my experience. I'd recommend leaf pressure bombs to determine when to start your spring irrigation, to avoid overwatering prior to veraison, and I should think you've made a couple of good choices.

We're just now reviewing Temecula Sangioveses and they are surprisingly good, so I'll have more wisdom to share soon.