klezman wrote:You beat both mill and PetiteSirah! Dang!
Alright Lucas...I've got one foot over the fence already, just need a shove to get me the rest of the way. Tried your Cab Franc from a while back and enjoyed it, still haven't touched the Kiss Ridge or Grenache.
And to get the questions rolling, did you do your "standard" acidulation routine on this one as well? Did it need added acid to bring it to balance as your other varietals need?
I'm not 100% sure about the acidulation on this wine because I forgot to copy down notes from the Harvest books before I left the winery for the day...
It's been a crazy couple weeks, we're doing a full taste and count of every barrel in the winery, tasted (and spat!) 100 bbls today, and on top of all that I have a million things to do before the weekend, so I unfortunately semi-blanked and forgot to jot the info down before I left. I guess I was pretty distracted looking forward to my weekend at Disneyland...
Anyways, I'll check the numbers in the morning, but for the time being, I'm 99.9% sure that both of these wines were treated as all of our wines were through the 2010 harvest, corrected TA to .75 g/100ml. The only thing that has changed lately is that now that I'm doing the decision making for must adds, I pay closer attention to pH, and ideally we're starting every fermentation under 3.5 pH (hopefully well under, but that's potassium/varietal/vineyard dependent).
If anything, we're correcting some wines even higher than .75 g/100ml. And these past two harvests, we've actually left a few lots where they were in TA if their pH was already substantially low. For example, we had some PV come in this year at 3.2... that doesn't need anymore help. After M/L, that's going to end up in a nice extended barrel/bottle age sweet spot of just a touch about 3.3-3.35.
As far as "bringing [...] into balance", I'm not sure that's how I'd describe it. But I really want to clarify that our acid addition is, in fact, a stability and aging decision, but it's also, and primarily, a style[/] decision. I'm not trying to be snooty, I'm just saying that it's not that we've discovered a magic number, it's that this is how we *like* our wines.
When we use the word balance, we suggest implicitly that there is [i]one number that is the right number... and what makes wine fantastic is that we might execute our primary ferms at 3.3-3.4, but there are equally awesome wines at 3.5-3.6 during primary. It's about making consistent style decisions that work well together.
Long story short, I'm pretty sure these wines had the same acidulation practice (I can't think of any reason they wouldn't), and if anything, I think it's probably more important with Petite Sirah than a lot of other varietals because...
*this is where we switch to Lucas' personal opinion mode, not official Meeker corporate opinion mode*
I really hate high-high (3.9-4.1) pH, high alc (15.5+%) Petite Sirahs. There's something about the nature of the flabbiness and high octane in combination with the really Rhone-funk of hot climate PS and the black pepper character that just does not rock my boat.
*back to Meeker mode*
While we like to think that we make pretty BIG (in structure and tannin, not alc) wines, compared to the relatively dominant style of PS in California, in some ways this is a kind more medium styled varietal for us... it's much more acidic and comparably elegant than the big blackberry-black-pepper-bowling-ball style of PS (once again, not trying to hate, that's just my personal preference).
As is typical with our wines, I think it's fair to more appropriately compare these two PS to their old-world equivalents as opposed to their next door neighbors. Except, that is, these PSs don't really show that CdP barnyard funktacularness.