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O.K. all you participants . . . ready, set, go with your tasting notes. I've been busy running a golf tournament. Had mine but don't have time to post just yet. Running out the door to dinner with 1997 Paradigm cab and 1997 Geyserville from Ridge.
The Queen has extensive notes coming.
Post until your hearts are content.
KofH [Wink]
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well, i've never posted tasting notes before, but i told myself i was going to play the may taa.

i was very pleasantly surprised with this wine from the moment i poured it. the color was a stunning darker than ruby red with a wonderful nose of berries, cherries & dark fruit. i gave it some time to breathe (30 minutes) & should have given it a bit more time as it was still a little bit closed, but it opened up gradually as i drank it into a delicious wine with predominant dark cherry & other berry-like flavors. i had not had a petite sirah in several years & i was very pleased with this wine [Big Grin] . i will definitely buy at least a few more bottles.

1999 Foppiano Petite Sirah

Very dark purplish red
Initially very muted aromas with some pencil lead. After about 45 minutes, aromas began to open up and display dark fruits. Upon tasting, was also initially quite closed but flavors of coffee, black pepper and blackberries became more pronounced with time. Fairly smooth/soft tannins on the finish. 88 pts
Slightly cloudy, but beautiful dark ruby color. Nose of pepper, espresso and berry.
A slight effervesence on the side of the tongue. Very spicy, with a hint of alcohol-infused chocolate covered cherries.
Extemely short finish with a harsh asrtingency that strips the tongue like water running off the hood of a freshly waxed car.
Probably needs alt least one more year in the bottle, but that won't do anything to increase the lack of fruit essence.
My score: 86

Paired with fresh ground sirloin/chuck burgers; grilled medely of asparagus, portobello and red onion; and an arugula salad. Wine was a pretty good match for the peppery arugula.
taa- Foppiano 99 Petite syrah (PS)
3rd wine of last night, so bear w me

Color:deep purple
Aroma: Slightly closed, mixed dark berry and pepper
Flavor: Blackberry, with coffee like afternote, medium bodied. Tinge of acid, but slightly harsh tannin; needs time to open up which I didn't fairly give it, since we had 6 wines to drink. I have had no more than 5 PS in my life, but most required more than 2-3 years, so I believe I couldn't give this a fair shake. 86 pts. QPR=B-
I thought I posted my notes earlier, but they don't seem to be here. Must have forgotten to hit the add reply button. DOOHHH!!!

Dark purple in color, very tight at first (I decanted for 90 minutes), but opened up by the second glass. Fairly simple, with blackberry and espresso flavors dominating, just a hint of black pepper. Medium bodied, very smooth with gentle tannins, and had a fairly short aftertaste. I did not note any of the gameiness (sp?) I frequently get in a PS. Syrah and petite sirah can have a similar profile, but in this case I would have guessed syrah. 87 points, and a B for QPR (at $14).
Tasting note for 1999 Foppiano Petite Sirah

Very dark reddish purple, nearly black in color. Numerous slow, red tinged legs appeared as I swirled it in the glass.

Very closed nose, hint of leather, coffee and black cherries.

I did not notice much fruit in my first glass. Perhaps a bit of black cherry. I did notice the big, mouth-drying tannins that weren't entirely unpleasant. The tannins tasted like tart cherries and were different from other heavy tannin wines I've had.

About 30 minutes later the wine opened up a little bit and some raspberry fruit showed through, but the tannins were still the dominant characteristic.

The taste lingered for at least a minute and I always seem to enjoy that for some reason. I'm not overly impressed by the wine, but it is different from the Cabs and Shiraz I usually drink. I'd give it an 86.
Opened for 45 minutes prior to tasting. Used Spiegelau stems.

Color is deep violet. Nice aromatics of spice, blackberries and brush. Medium bodied wine with nice flavors of blueberries, blackberries, earth, and cocoa. Tannins are dry and present with the acidity in check. Finish is moderate in length. Nice bottle of wine, yet not as chunky as other PS I have had. jb Rating 86.

For $14, this is a nice wine that I would recommend for everyday consumption. A little more $ than some other favorite quaffers (Penfolds Rawsons Retreat, Casa Lapostolle Cab Rapel, Renwood Sierra Series Zin.) If it was $18, I would say pass. At $14, a nice change of pace wine.

Hola to everyone across the USA and Canada. Getting my tasting notes in before "Survivor" starts at 7:00. My bet is on Kathy from Vermont.

Foppiano Petite Sirah. Paid $19.99 @ The Cellars in Woodbury. Drank the first glass by itself immediately after opening. Drank 2 more glasses with a dinner of "Murray's Steak and Pasta"--sirloin strips marinated in Worschestire sauce, crushed black pepper and oregano, then stir fried with diced tomatoes, fresh garlic and mushrooms, and tossed with penne pasta, chopped basil, and green onion. This was my first experience with a Petite Sirah.

"Colors of dark purple, resembling Welch's grape juice. On the nose, an initial burst of smoke and spice, followed by gobs of blackberry jam and, by my nasal passages, wet earth. The tasting brings more black fruits, particularly plums and raisins. Full bodied, silky and deep, although perhaps a bit heavy or cloying by my tastes. (This may just be due to my tastes running towards French terroir-style wines) The tannins were smooth and the finish was very dang respectable--a good 15-20 seconds. The wine held up very well to all of the pepper and spice of the steak dish" On the famous MBD scale, I give this a 90, and would consider buying it again.
Opened this w/IW at a party hosted by his SO. Served alongside grilled chicken/pork kabobs and wild rice pilaf.

Deep violet/purple coloration, mostly opaque, w/slow-forming thick legs. Soft aromas of wild berries and pepper spice, nose was quite subdued. Slightly over-acidic, fine-grained tannins very much in check, pleasant berry and spice flavors...really not your typical PS. Finish was slightly tart and tannic.

Nowhere near the block-buster the '97, therefore it was a bit disappointing. Still a nice grilled-food wine at a fair price. 85 pts., $19, "B-" QPR (at that price). Note that we served this wine outdoors this evening and it has been very unseasonably chilly (58-60F). The wine may have opened up w/a bit more ambient heat.

[ 05-19-2002, 08:53 PM: Message edited by: kybo ]
Foppiano P. Sirah '99
I accidently drank this bottle last week and didn't write up a tasting note, so I actually had to buy a second bottle - and I didn't like it much the first time [Razz] !
So, after tasting this several times over several different days, I have realized I don't like this wine on the first day. It gave off tinny aromas, some dumb disjointed fruit, dark plums, black cherries, leather, the acid seemed a bit high, greenish tannins, and I couldn't find much oak.
After the first glass last night I pumped the rest of the bottle, because I know from previous experience, this wine was much better the next day.
So today, yes, it's much more interesting. The nose had emerged with soft oak, plummy berries, leather, soft tumeric, celery seed, blackberries, floral scents of violet, and mesquite smoke. The acid seemed a bit more settled, and adjusted with the tannins which remained a bit green, but more intriging. The wine worked out much of its dull side, and emerged to be a bit finer, however, I thought not very absorbing.
I did a structured tasting sheet on it and worked out a score of 84.
First of all..I am battling Strepp throat so this was not a fair tasting [Frown]
I have not had many PS, mostly David Bruce CC and of course the '98 Fop.
This wine seemed a bit constricted (as does my throat), was not sure if decanting would help but none-the-less, went ahead, straight out of the bottle. Dark jammy fruit eventually made their appearance and definitly; black pepper (my husband even got that one!).
Went fine with the mixed veggie grill and flat bread..a pleasant enough wine for the $13 I paid.
Mr. Pe seems to like wines with alot of acidity (so we are finding [Smile] ) and he liked this more than I..but, like I said..Strepp [Mad]

PE rates this 83 pts w/ Strepp
Maybe an 86 w/o Strepp

MplsBurgDude...right on!! Kathy's gonna take the Mil! [Smile]

[ 05-19-2002, 09:25 PM: Message edited by: Pinot Envy ]
DISCLAIMER/ADMISSION: I am a VERY short term fine wine enjoyer. To demonstrate that fact, I must sheepishly admit that the '98 Foppiano Petite Sirah is not only the first bottle of wine that I ever paid $20 or more for (I paid $20 for the 1 bottle/customer allocation that was allowed in June 2001 at the Foppiano tasting room in Healdsburg), it was also the first wine that I ever bought a case or more of ... when I found it marked (mistakenly ??) at $13.99 here in Memphis. So, I cleaned out the shelves and started my fine wine addiction. (This was the same wine shop that had '94 Ridge Montebello marked at $100, but I talked them down to $80/ . I've still got those, looking for the 'right moment' to open them ...)

So, in deference to andreasx' request, I decided to open one of my few remaining '98's along with the TAA '99. Here's what I found:


'99 Foppiano Petite Sirah (13.5%, natural cork showing signs of advancing leakage, but apparently not making it all the way out). $19 before tax and case discount.

Reddish-purple in color, with a moderate dark fruit (leaning towards plum), black pepper, and alcohol on the nose. Relatively long and opaque legs that showed even more strongly when brought outside under the patio fan (for the folks back home: we people Down South tend to have ceiling fans built into our patios because even the summer NIGHTS are too freakin' hot down here!)

Finish started somewhat astringent and tannic, with a moderate duration turning to mild dark fruit.


'98 Foppiano Petite Sirah (13.0%, composite cork showing no signs of leakage). $14 before tax and case discount.

A clear red almost indistinguishable from the '99 in the glass while looking up through the glass, but appearing more brick-red diagonally from the sides (while the '99 appeared more purple from the diagonal sides. It's tough to describe, but trust me ... the '98 was redder, the '99 more purple).

The nose was of moderate dark fruits, particularly blackberry (as opposed to plum in the '99), and showed limited EtOH (probably because of the 13.9%, vs the 13.5% in the '99).

The dark fruit flavor was refined and smooth, more like a Cab than a Zin. The legs were of medium length and clear, which was exacerbated in scale but consistent in quality when brought out under the patio fan.


Both wines were enjoyed with a sirloin grilled with terragon butter and Foppiano-ed mushrooms. Oh, and there were some side dishes, but who cares when you are faced with a pound of sirloin and two open bottles of wine?!? [Eek!]

I believe Lady Stemor also had some of the wine, but I can't be sure how much ... [Roll Eyes]

Net result of the tasting was this: the '99, subject of our TAA, was somewhat less in quality than the highly regarded '98. If the '98 was a 91 pointer as graded by WS, then the '99 is an 87-88.

We both enjoyed each bottle and, since the '98's are worked out of the distrubution channels (but not out of my "cellar"!), we will continue to buy the '99 Foppiano as a good QPR wine that goes well with our tastes.

(edited ONLY for style, addition of local retail prices and "disclaimer/admission" heading at the beginning)

[ 05-19-2002, 11:14 PM: Message edited by: stemor ]
Out of the bottle, I found this young deep purple-red color to have a nose of violets, spice and dark rich berries. First impressions, lots of rich blackberries and sage, lead to some smooth tannins, and a nice 15 second finish of red licorice, asian spices, beef, blackberries, with a slightly taosty oaked finish. This has a nice rush of fruit throughout, much better than the last Petite Sirah I tasted 3 months ago (Bogle). Much better ... more complex, richer, and fruitier. However, I did find this to be slighty more alcoholic than I wanted.

Served with a mushroom, onion, and swiss cheeseburger: Almost the same, except that I found it to have a cherry carbonated taste, which I found utterly confusing. any explanations as to why I might find this. With food, i was able to draw out some of the chocolate finish, but not very much.

Overall, the carbonated taste left me perplexed. Could it have been something I ate along with the wine? Onion maybe? by it lonesome I could not detect it. I would definitely say this was the better Petite i have had this year, with a 88+ score.
Just a quick TN since it's late and I'm tired from a week in Disney and a half bottle of this good wine.

Very nice deep purple color. The aroma and flavor seemed to me to have more of a cab profile than a PS. Tannins were present but not harsh. Mrs. Q and I really enjoyed this after a wineless week in Orlando but it is maybe lacking a bit in structure. Not as powerful as the '98 but I would not hesitate to buy it again.

88 pts.
1st tasting was straight after opening:

Deep purple in color; very tight aromas that showed signs of leather, one dimensional berry, hint of pepper, and the acidity made my nose tingle.
The first thing I noticed when tasting was the leather, medium tannins, and especially the acidity...from there the black berry(ies) showed up briefly with that hint of pepper before the tannins and acidity groped for the finish.
Short fruit finish with the acidity winning the race over the tannin to be the last taste that left my mouth still watering (from the acidity).

Tasted again 45 min. later:
Initial leather taste soften, the black berries did open to some degree...but not enough for me to detect any diversity, still slight pepper, but the over-powering tannins and acidity still overwhelm.
Did not like this wine as it was...perhaps some aging. May be I will never like Petite Sirah's?
BTW, the bottle states 'Spices' and 'Chocolate'.
I didn't detect either...again perhaps with aging?

I give it 85 (without the bullet!)
I bought this for $20. This was my first PS. Frankly, this was a varietal I simply did not pay much attention to in the past although I was always curious about it. Therefore, I was looking forward to this TAA after the King picked this bottle.

Some brief research revealed that this wine is not related to Syrah as I had wrongly assumed. Rather it is the French grape Duraf which is rarely grown in France anymore. I'm sure all the PS fans already knew this.

The cork on my bottle showed some signs of mild seepage but nothing damaging. I brought it to a barbeque at a friends house on Sunday. I was not able to decant it or give it any air which it could have used. I drank it without food. If I had waited, the wine would have been gone.

Inky black color. Multiple short legs. I found this to be a full bodied wine. Very fruity and jammy with black fruit dominating. Quite big. Overly tannic at this stage of its life. This wine definitely needs time. The dry tannins made the wine rather acidic. Hopefully the tannins will mellow with a year or two of aging. As I said there was enough fruit to outlast the tannins. It could come together to be a very nice wine. Under the conditions I drank it, I would rate this wine an 85-86. Perhaps it would have been a point or so higher if I would have let it open up with some air time. With aging it would be better still.

Vino, one small correction. Petite sirah is in fact durif, but durif is indeed related to syrah. It is a cross between syrah and some insignificant Rhone varietal I can never remember (Pelousin or something like that).

Edit: if you're interested, here is a link to a paper written by Dennis Fife of Fife Vineyards about petite sirah:

[ 05-20-2002, 12:47 PM: Message edited by: redredred ]
Deep purple with a slight violet hue.

Alcoholic grapey nose that faded and became fruitier as time went on. Nose never opened up fully even after 2 hours, but some hints of red berries and a spice I cannot identify started to appear.

Medium body that appears to thicken as time went on. Light fruity flavors that reminded me of wines that Napa wineries used to serve when the tastings were free. A little hot and tannins seem to get stronger as time went on

Had with steak, baby back ribs and sausage (artichoke and sun-dried tomatoes). $13.99 at Beverages & More.

This is probably the first PS I’ve had except for a 1990 that they served at Stags Leap on the Silverado Trail Tasting Weekend a month or two ago. If I were rating it as a PS, I would give it an 85. It may show better the 2nd day.
Um, Hi Folks. I feel like a bit of an imposter here; but I promised my dear bugguy that I would post his tasting notes in his absence and distant proximity to a computer.

Foppiano Vineyards. Sonoma Co.
Petite Syrah 1999, $13

Appearance: intense, very cool red, almost maroon, somewhat cloudy, bits of sediment (tartic acid crystals?)

Smell: "dusty," earthy, blackberries or currants, a little bit rubbery

Taste: assertive, spicey cloves(?), currants, minerals, fairly tart, sharp, trying tannins (= a little too young?)

Question marks are his. Hope I got this all right. His writing is a little hard to read! Also, I think he edited out all of my comments -- and now I can't really remember what they were!

We decanted this wine for two-plus hours.
Deep purple/garnet color, with multiple thick legs.
Got next to nothing from a muted nose. Very dry mouthfeel, not to be unexpected from PS. Highly tannic. Believe the wine might evolve into something nice in a year or too.
Queen thought she was sniffing cognac. Her tongue turned deep purple.
Found only slight hints of fruit (blueberry perhaps), some dirt, prune and a little spice. Finish is short.
All in all a disappointment. Obviously I can't pick my nose.
Wish I had tasted the 98.
Pinot Envy hope you do better by the TAA tasters than I did.
Well, I just had to come back and see if anyone noticed "bugguy's" posting. He speaks affectionately of y'all.

I can't remember my own comments on the said bottling because we had another bottle of wine a day or two later which I thought was fantastic. Now, you're going to think I'm awful because I don't retain these names and details terribly well; but I believe it was something like Sausal zinfandel. Bugguy may fill you in when he gets back.

Yes, we are coming to Chicago in mid-June -- two days after he returns from Nicaragua! I imagine he will contact you (Vino Me) for your phone number before we leave. We'll be a little busy with family, but wine-related things are VERY high on bugguy's priority list.


[ 06-15-2002, 11:28 AM: Message edited by: buggal ]
Buggal- Sounds good. Hope we can hook up.

King- All in all I think you had quite a successful TAA. A nice turnout. Notes from across the country and even Canada for the 1st time and I'm sure a few more notes will straggle in. Of course you can't guarantee the quality of a wine which you have not tried and has never been rated. However, I'm glad you picked the wine you did. It was my 1st PS and if you had not picked it I may have never tried one. Thanks.

Don't be too hard on yourself. I think there were a number of us who enjoyed this wine just fine...the TAA is about more than tasting a "blockbuster". I was surprised the wine didn't open up a little more for you though. I too, thought it was very closed initially but got better after about an hour and was much better the next day. Still just in the 80s though. Thanks for your time in picking it. My first PS, so no complaints about your choice here. [Smile]
FLOP????? You are being way too hard on yourself, King. By my calculations, the average score for this wine was an 85.9, and that's conservative as I used the lower number when people gave a range. Not great, but certainly not a flop. All in all, about as well as can be expected given the limitations on the TAA (i.e. no major reviews, no discussions on this board, widely distributed, under $20). It sure is in the same neighborhood as the other TAA wines, and it seems like there were more participants this time, so maybe the availability was a little better. Besides that, you introduced a varietal many people had never tried before. I would say you did a fine job.

As far as other petites people might want to experiemnt with, I recommend the 99 Rutherford Grove (approx $30). This one needs a few years (or several hours in a decanter), but it is a huge wine and a very good example of what can be done with this grape.
Your Grace--

As a fellow obsessive compulsive Virgo, let me add that I too very much enjoyed this month's TAA. Like many, this was my first tasting of a PS. While I think I might have been the high rater here at 90, I don't recall any rating lower than 83 or so. The TNs were all very similar in terms of aromas, flavors, and colors. I think we learned that we are a reasonably knowledgable and consistent group, and we got to drink a nice wine in the process. If it would make you feel better, next time you are in charge of a TAA, you have my permission to pick a Chambertin or a Les Clos!!!! [Big Grin]
Greetings King and the "Court"

I've been checking these posts lately for insight and decided to play along with the TAA to get my feet wet.

First tried a Bogle PS, liked it and wanted to try something else in a Petit. Really enjoyed the 1997 Foppiano PS at a dinner party some time ago. We served it with grilled chicken and spinach lasagna. Went out and bought a few more bottles afterward. Haven't tried the only bottle of 98 I have, but found the 99 for $13 a few weeks back and figured this was a good excuse to jump into the fray.

Grilled a pork tenderloin with a red wine and dried cherry sauce with a touch of NV mustard Sat. nite and quaffed the Fopp. Cloudy purple in color and not a real fragrant nose. Failed to discern any cherry notes but black and blue berries, along with coffee, pepper, spice(?)and chocolate notes. The wine had a thick texture and opened up nicely over the course of the evening. Tongue was black and coated by the tannic power of this youthful wine. Needs some time in the bottle to soften. Elegant it is not, and likely never will be. MP Rating 85-87. Nice QPR at $13. Glad I have two more to sit on for a couple years.

Good choice KoH. Variety is the spice of life!

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