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All about petite sirah
What is petite sirah?
You may think that petite sirah wine is just a milder version of the famous French wine syrah. Actually, things are more complicated than that. This full-bodied red wine originates from a different type of grape, Durif, which grows in France since the mid-19th century.
This fruity red wine is super easy to drink, thanks to its medium acidity, but it has a high tannin content, which makes for a bold flavor. The complex and interesting flavor profile features notes of blueberry, plum, black pepper and chocolate. Some wine enthusiasts also perceive a hint of black tea.
Petite sirah grapes are pretty rare, and they only occupy around 10,000 acres worldwide. This fruity wine mostly hails from California, but you'll also find good bottles from Israel and South Australia.
Who invented it?
In 19th-century France, botanist Francois Durif crossed two grape varieties: syrah and peloursin. He produced an excellent vine variety and decided to call it Durif after himself. Who wouldn't want to give his own name to a vine? As previously mentioned, Durif grape is the one they use to produce petite sirah.
However, this red wine didn't gain popularity until more recent times, when Californian winemakers started to produce it. While the name "petite sirah" sounds French, Californian producers invented it, to indicate a similarity with syrah wine.
Petit sirahs go with bold flavors. If for no other reason, it just feels wrong to drink it with bland foods. A high-tannin, sophisticated wine like this pairs well with aged Gouda, BBQ meats, Camembert, sauteed mushrooms and roasted pork.