The Tasting Panel magazine

September 2015

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 10 of 140

FEEDBACK P.S.: No Apologies Your words certainly have people talking. I could get some really delicious, small-produc- tion Petites to you, to lead you into another tasting experience. It's my experience that you don't get to taste about 95 percent of the Petites being handcrafted. Most production right now is 500 or fewer cases (of the 900+ producers). It sells directly to consumers, and they usually sell out long before the next release. I have to tell you that some members of [Petite Sirah advocacy group] P.S. I Love You are furious with you. We've been discussing sending samples to you. I remember—as a publicist, who also launched a wine blog—daring to say, but ever so cautiously, "Everyone has a palate." I wanted people to be brave enough to taste a wine and decide if it meant anything to him or her. When I was a new wine taster, I started with Merlot. I think that ruined the Merlot experience for me, because Merlot is not an entry wine. I also remember for years, if Robert Parker liked it, I didn't. Again, for the same reason: I had a young palate. So, at this stage of the game, I just accept that we're all different. I (personally) think that the best Petites have been elusive for you. The brands just don't send them out, because they don't need endorsements. But—for you—we can arrange an up-tick. If you'd ever want to walk on the cult side, let me know. Jo Diaz Diaz Communications and P.S. I Love You, Inc. The samples have already started to arrive. I'm prepping my palate. —A. D. B. P.S.: No Imposter I just finished reading this month's [July] edition. After reading your editorial I am compelled to offer an alternative opinion on P.S. Although I somewhat agree with you on the name Petite Sirah being misleading to consumers, nearly everyone I know in the trade is well aware that P.S. is not Syrah. And having been known as P.S. in California since at least 1884, the name has historical precedence. I don't know of any P.S. producer that is deliberately trying to pawn off P.S. as Syrah; they promote it for what it is, an alternative red wine variety. Like any California wine, there are both good and less good examples. I have been a fan for many years of Stags' Leap Winery's P.S., both the single variety and in the field blend Ne Cede Malis. If you haven't tried their 2011 P.S., I urge you to do so. A very good wine from a slightly challenging vintage. I do agree with you that no matter how good a P.S. is, it will never challenge the greatest examples of Syrah. However, it should be pointed out that P.S. is not the total imposter you imply in your explanation of Durif's monster. It is, as I suspect you know, now likely genetically proven to be a Peloursin X Syrah natural vineyard crossing. So P.S. does have Syrah in its DNA. On a different note, in Deborah [Parker Wong]'s interesting article on the Livermore Valley, she refers to Colombard and Folle Blanche as V. riparia, when they are in fact both vinifera, descendants of the prolific Gouais Blanc. They may be identified as riparia in the document she references, the 1893 report by Charles Bundschu. In parting, I really enjoy reading the magazine every month. Congratulations and keep up the great work! Eric Hemer MS, MW Senior Vice President, Director of Wine Education, SWS of America Thanks for your excellent reply. I appreciate your input. —Anthony Dias Blue In regard to the riparia versus vinifera issue, Deborah Parker Wong notes that the varieties mentioned were grafted to riparia, so the original report listed them that way. —Ed. 10  /  the tasting panel  /  september 2015 As we anticipated, Anthony Dias Blue's opinion piece on Petite Sirah in the July issue ("P.S., I Don't Get It") sparked some reader response . . . PHOTO COURTESY OF P.S. I LOVE YOU

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Tasting Panel magazine - September 2015