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Macauley Napa Valley Petite Sirah 2015

Petite Sirah from Napa Valley, California
    15.3% ABV
    • RP92
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    15.3% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    Beautiful and deep. This is a very well-rounded example of this noble grape, which we’ve Macauley has been making since 2008. The tannins are there for structure, flavor and aging, but not overbearing as they can often be in Petite Sirah. It comes from the Kenefick Ranch up in Calistoga, a very warm part of the valley giving it boldness and weight.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Macauley

    Macauley

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    Macauley, Napa Valley, California
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    The Macauley Vineyard label was originally established in St. Helena in the early 1980s by Ann Macauley Watson and for several years produced a very well received late harvest Sauvignon Blanc with help from renowned winemaker, Ric Forman.

    In the late summer of 2000, Ann’s son Mac went to work for Rudd Estate in Oakville. After several months of winery work and education he was inspired to revive the family label, and, working with winemaker and childhood friend Kirk Venge, crushed his first grapes in October 2001.

    Mac and Kirk have one goal: to source the highest quality fruit in Napa Valley and make wines of extraordinary depth and personality. The grapes they choose showcase the terroir of the vineyards and create a remarkable wine-drinking experience.

    Napa Valley

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    One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production and tourism, the Napa Valley is the AVA that brought worldwide recognition to California winemaking. 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.

    Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that lend even more character specifics to the wines. Furthest south is Carneros, followed by Yountville, Oakville & Rutherford. Above those two are St.-Helena and the valley's newest 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 District, and Mt. Veeder. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from more time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

    Petite Sirah

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    With its deep color, rich texture, firm tannin, and bold flavors, there is nothing petite about Petite Sirah. The variety was originally known as Durif, but took on its more popular moniker when it was imported to California from France in 1884. Despite its origins, it has since become known as a quintessentially Californian grape. It has been commonly utilized as a blending partner for softer Zinfandel and other varieties, but has also found success as a single varietal wine. It is most commonly grown in Lodi and the Central Valley, and to an extent in Sonoma and Napa counties.

    In the Glass

    Petite Sirah wines are typically deep, dark, rich, and inky, with concentrated flavors of blueberry, plum, backberry, black pepper, sweet baking spice, leather, and cigar box, and chewy, chocolatey tannins. Notes of vanilla and coconut can be found in examples with significant amounts of new oak.

    Perfect Pairings

    Petite Sirah’s full body and bold fruit make it an ideal match for barbecue, especially brisket with a slightly sweet sauce, and other rich meat dishes. The variety’s heavy tannins call for fatty protein and strong flavors that won’t get drowned out by the wine.

    Sommelier Secret

    Don’t get Petite Sirah confused with Syrah—it is not, as the name might seem to imply, a smaller version of Syrah. It is, however, the offspring of Syrah (crossed with an obscure French variety called Peloursin), so the two grapes do share some characteristics despite being completely distinct varieties.

    RVLMQPSN15_2015 Item# 344602