Definitely at or near the top of the list for Great Big Reds. This is the first great grape that Anne discovered. She still says “I was amazed! It had flavor.” The 70s were a dark time for red wine, and we don’t mean the color.
Petite sirah makes for dark, dark color. In fact, the red wine color scale is pretty much pinot noir (light) to petite sirah (dark).
The flavors tend toward black fruit, and tannin can be noticeable and sometimes zippy/tingly. Aging in oak can tame the tannin (somewhat), and add oak flavors.
If you haven’t seen it around much, that’s because there isn’t much of it.
If you’re looking for wine in a grocery store, they may have the Bogel petite sirah, and they may not have many other choices.
We like the Bogel pretty well. If you find some others, rejoice! Also, check the alcohol level. Even Bogel only comes in at 13.5%. At a lower ABV it wouldn’t feel so ‘great big’ in your mouth.
You may spot it adding flavor and zingy tannin to California blends.
Check out Madeleine Puckette’s full write-up over at WineFolly.com. (And don’t forget to check out her book!)