California, 13.8% ABV
$6 at the Berkeley, CA, store on 8 Nov. Still there today.
After liking the Powder Keg Syrah pretty well but not extraordinarily well, I thought I could leave this alone. But then Expat wrote about it: “A full dose of ripe fruit but not cloying. I’m getting two things out of this early on – blueberry pie and leather. I like petite sirahs with tannins that manhandle me a little bit paired with a nice drying finish. This has a softer backbone than I was hoping but so far it’s pretty good. If you like softer, thick wines this is definitely for you.“ And EricFromRichmond also liked it, so I had to get a bottle before the sale ended. And I agree with them! 🙂
When I opened the bottle, I immediately poured off half of it into a 375ml bottle and stoppered it with very little air. I don’t recall how long it took me to consume the rest of it, but it didn’t impress me that much the first night. It struck me as a sort of soft and generic red without all that much Petite Sirah character: cherry and cranberry. It slowly opened to show a little more of the PS blackberry fruit, but only enough to make me hope the second half would be better.
A couple days later, I opened the second half. A little more air does indeed deliver wine with yummy ripe blackberry, with a little chocolate /prune. (Within the precision we’re dealing with here, this is IMO completely equivalent to “blueberry pie and leather.”) It’s still a little overly soft and fruity for my taste — the strong tannin and acid of PS may have been a little too tamed here — but it is nonetheless tasty.