Bogle Petite Sirah 2006
I freely admit that I don’t know a lot about wine. I’ve been learning what I can for the past ten years, but almost every time I ask someone what type of wine they like, they’ll name a grape that I never heard of. This doesn’t particular peeve me; rather, it makes me eager to dive further into the arcana of vinting. When I go into a wine shop, I’ll read the tags saying that this wine got a 89 rating from Wine Spectator or this bottle won the coveted so-and-so award. Sometimes, I’ll ask the clerk about the wines. But if the recommended wine is over $25, I rarely buy it. I don’t think I have the sophisticated palate for such things.
On the other hand, I don’t buy Bolla or Woodbridge or Yellow Tail. They’re cheap enough, for sure, and popular. I know their Merlots tend to be spicy, their Chardonnays are bland, and their Pinot Noirs taste like tar. Plus, if I go to someone’s party, there will be 17 bottles of the stuff. I can taste these wines whenever I want. There is no reason for me to keep a bottle on hand.
So, I tend to stick to particular grapes. I like Riesling–sweet bottles taste like pear and dry bottles taste like citrus. All vinters have different flavors, and it rarely disappoints. I enjoy Shiraz–the bold flavors let me know I’m drinking a red wine and not a glass filled with ash. I’m rarely tied to one brand. If it’s in my price range (and Rieslings almost always are), I’ll try it.
But I always have a standby.I’ve recommended California’s Bogle Petite Sirah to everyone I know who likes red wines. Around my area, the bottles go for $10–12. Cheap! When I first started buying this bottle, there were always a dozen on the shelf at my local. Now, two years since I’ve been recommending them, I sometimes have to search three or four stores for the one bottle that’s left. Either Bogle is having shipping issues, or my word-of-mouth campaign was too successful.
This is a simple wine. It starts off slightly tart, like a strawberry, and finishes with a ripe cherry flavor. Are there overtones or high notes or subtleties? No. This is a simple wine. But it’s tasty. And inexpensive. I’m finding 2006 and 2007 bottles in my local wine stores. I believe I first started drinking the 2004 vintage. But the flavor and price has been consistent.
I enjoy this wine so much that my mom got me a case for my birthday, and even after finishing that within the year, I’m still buying more bottles. Every time I open a bottle, and have my first sip, it reminds me of the time I first tasted Beaujolais, but that’s another story.
If you have a reliable standby, let me know in the comments. I’ve got a lot to learn about wine, and I’m an eager student.