Petit Verdot is one of the five grapes of Bordeaux, although very few plantings remain in Bordeaux, and it is never made into a varietal wine there, both because of its difficulty ripening in Bordeaux’s cool climate, and because essentially all red wines are blended in Bordeaux. However, Petit Verdot does well in California’s warmer climate, especially in Napa, and while its main use is still on Bordeaux-style red blends, it is increasingly being bottled on its own. The resulting wines certainly share some characteristics with Cabernet based wines, but typically with more body and tannin, and with some interesting flavors unique to PV. Today’s offering, the 2012 from Owl Ridge is a wonderful example of this, and the price makes it a can’t miss.
The 2012 Owl Ridge Napa Valley Petit Verdot is deeply saturated purple in color, with explosive aromas of cassis, plum, blackberry, and violets. The palate shows more blackberry, joined by tobacco, leather and spice. In some ways very Cabernet-like, this wine reveals its difference on the palate, with chewy tannin and a lingering impression of juicy dark fruit. Rich in style, yet with acid and tannin to balance things out, this is wine that manages to be powerful without being overblown. Sure to delight Cabernet fans, at just $22 for a wine of this quality from Napa Valley, this is one to stock up on!
Winemaker: Joseph C. Otos
Varietal: Petit Verdot
AVA: St. Helena, Napa Valley
Total Cases Made: 190 750ml
Owl Ridge Wines began to take advantage of the high-quality Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay grown in Sonoma County. Winemaker Joe Otos uses 100% French oak and winemaking techniques that preserve the intensity of the fruit flavors. The resulting wines are big, but balanced wines.
They have now reached the point where their wines have begun to achieve the recognition they deserve. Owl Ridge Wines was voted "Best New Winery" at the 2006 Wine Literary Awards Tasting. This is a significant honor because more than 80 wine writers voted in a secret ballot at a tasting that had 1000 wines.
Owl Ridge has won more than 18 gold medals in the last year at major competitions. This includes two "Best of Class" awards.
Learn more at www.owlridge.com.