Turley Rattlesnake Ridge Petite Syrah 2008
Petite Sirah from Napa Valley, California
The Wine Advocate - "All five of Turley's 2008 Petite Syrahs (they do not spell it 'Sirah') are extraordinary, and I could probably write the same tasting notes for each. My favorites include the Hayne Vineyard and Library Vineyard, followed by the Pesenti Vineyard, which shows more chalky graphite characteristics. They all possess huge aromas of blackberries, blueberries, and ink, massive fruit concentration, enormous body, and a lot less alcohol than the Zinfandels (a character of this varietal). Readers who purchase any of these cuvees should forget them for 10 years, and drink them over the following 25-30 years. They will handsomely repay the investment in patience.
International Wine Cellar - "Saturated ruby. Black fruits, camphor, melted chocolate and espresso on the nose. Dense but youthfully imploded, with a strong spine of acids and tannins keeping the dark fruit and flinty mineral flavors under wraps today. Sweet and chewy but also serious and backward. Finishes ripely tannic and long. A 'mere' 14.8% alcohol, lower than the many zinfandels that preceded it."
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About Napa ValleyView a map of Napa Valley wineries
It's hard not to think of Napa Valley when thinking of California wines. The region is, after all, the one that brought world recognition to California wine making. The area was settled by a few choice wine families in the 1960's who bet that the wines of the area would grow and flourish. They were right. The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when vineyard lands were scooped up and vines were planted throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, from large conglomerates to small boutiques to cult classics. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux Blends. Whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
Notable FactsWithin the Napa Valley lie smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two is St.-Helena and finally, just granted an AVA, Calistoga. These areas are situated on the valley floor and are known for creating rich, smooth Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay. There are a few mountain regions as well, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs. Those include Howell Mountain, Stags Leap and Mount Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.
About CaliforniaIt's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country unto itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
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