Wine Spectator gives Trueheart Petite Sirah a “92” rating, and names it “top of the group” among 10 California Reds for $40 or Less!
Editor’s note: What follows is the entire article, available to WineSpectator.com members only. Click HERE to link to the on-line article.
Posted: August 13, 2012
This week’s report focuses on wines where quality and value intersect nicely, with price tags set at $40 or lower. Red wine lovers should find a bottle in this group to fit their preference, whether they’re fans of Petite Sirah, Merlot, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, or all four.
At the top of the group is a delicious Petite Sirah from a brand new to us, Sonoma’s Trueheart Vineyard. The balance between the wine’s vivid fruit flavors and dense tannins is exactly what I seek out in Petite Sirahs. The $35 price tag makes it all the more enticing. Bogle and Foppiano also show the fun, more affordable examples of Petite, with everyday-drinking prices and plenty of personality.
There’s one more new face in this week’s list, Casaeda, a new label from Karen Culler (who also makes wines under the Culler label). Casaeda is a rare find in Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon: a concentrated, intense example for only $30.
Vivid blueberry, licorice and blackberry aromatics leap out of the glass, but on the palate the flavors are dense and delicious, with touches of spice and vanillin that give this a profile of cobbler à la mode. Features dense tannins, but stays polished. Drink now through 2022. 208 cases made. —M.W.
Sleek and focused, with aromas of violet and red currant and balanced, layered flavors of cherry and cedar, with a hit of tomato leaf that leads to ripe tannins. Drink now through 2017. 100 cases made. —T.F.
Dense and powerful, with bold black cherry and licorice aromas and ripe huckleberry, caramel and spice flavors that linger toward slightly rustic tannins. Drink now through 2018. 540 cases made. —T.F.
Zesty and ripe, offering aromas of jammy raspberry and brown baking spices, with supple, briary cherry and herb flavors that take on depth and crisp tannins toward the finish. Drink now through 2018. 44 cases made. —T.F.
Tight, firm, vibrant and concentrated, offering dried dark berry, pencil lead and cedar flavors, with a snappy, fresh finish. Drink now through 2022. 343 cases made. —J.L.
A soft, supple style, with floral black cherry and spicy herb aromas that lead to appealing red currant, caramel and toast flavors. Takes on depth on the finish. Drink now through 2017. 839 cases made. —T.F.
There’s plenty of charm packed into this wine, with toffee notes giving way to generous wild blackberry and blueberry flavors that show plenty of spicy tobacco flavors and thick, chewy tannins. Drink now through 2020. 178 cases made. —M.W.
This solid, well-focused Merlot shows good complexity, with dried cherry and herb aromas and appealing red currant and spice flavors. Drink now through 2016. 13,200 cases made. —T.F.
Vivid, juicy wild blackberry and dark fruit flavors are appealing, with thick tannins and plenty of punch to the flavors, accented by spice and tobacco notes. Drink now through 2018. 198,000 cases made. —M.W.
Berry and plum flavors have a tangy, juicy side, with plenty of herb, cola and spice notes. Tannins firm up on the finish. Drink now through 2020. 7,500 cases made. —M.W.