Thursday, April 15, 2010

Ballentine Vineyards Petite Sirah 2006

Another very nice Petite Sirah that was provided by Ballentine Vineyards for review.  The Ballantine Vineyard dates back more than 100 years between the Pocai family and the Ballentine's.  Today, Betty and Van Ballentine run the winery.  In 1992, they reopened the winery and released their first vintage.  Previously, the family had sold grapes to major wineries including Mondavi, Rombauer, Caymus, Rosenblum and Ravenswood.  The 2006 Petite Sirah was harvested from the Fig Tree Vineyard in St. Helena which took its name from two old fig trees located on the eastern edge of the vineyard.  This big and bold wine has a dark red color with aromas of blackberries and blueberries, along with some black pepper and a subtle hint of oak.  On the palate, there were lots of dark jammy fruits of black cherries, blackberries, mullberries and plums.  Then in the mid palate, a sweetness kicked in of raspberry and bing cherries.  The end was finished off with some pepper and spices from the rack, along with a minimal amount of oak.  The wine was barrelled for 16 months in French oak barrels, of which 15% was new French oak.  The tannins were pretty firm and, although the alcohol content is 14.7%, it did not overpower the wine.  Overall, a nice petite sirah that needs some more time in the cellar.  A great wine for the upcoming grilling season. Would also pair nicely with a beef stew or goulash. Only 300 cases of the 2006 Petite Sirah Fig Tree Vineyard was produced.  It retails for $35, which in my opinion is a little too high for this wine.  Wine Enthusiast gave the 2006 vintage a 91 point rating.  We enjoyed this wine and would recommend you picking it up too.

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