Friday, January 4, 2019

Petite Sirah Loves Lake County

The 2016 Two Angels Red Hills Petite Sirah is a 100% varietal wine from the Red Hills area of the Lake County AVA.  The hills are nestled along Clear Lake, at the foot of an active volcano which has not erupted in eleven-thousand years, but we're keeping an eye on it anyway.  No doubt, that ancient force left its mark on the iron-rich red soil of the area.

The intriguing label art was created by 16th century Flemish artist Jacob DeBacker.  The winery explains that the theme of the piece is the "hilarity of inebriation and the trauma of the morning after."  They say, "Excessive joy must be countered by equally excessive sorrow, with penitential atonement for pleasure."  So, no "hair of the dog" if you overdo it.

This wine's Petite Sirah grapes were hand-harvested and destemmed before fermentation.  Aging took place over nine months in French Oak, 20% of which was new.  This wine's fourth vintage comes in at 14.3% abv and it retails for about $30.

The wine is so purple it's just about black.  The nose is amazing - so full of smoked meat and black olives you'd think you were in a deli.  Forest floor plays in, as do blackberry and blueberry notes.  The palate matches those descriptors with maybe a little more of that dark fruit showing, but it's still a savory treat.  The tannins work well but don't get in the way of the sip.  Bring in the meats, or pair with some blue cheese.