James Stokes was a British sailor who jumped ship in Monterey in 1833, passing himself off as a doctor with medicine stolen from the boat. Despite killing a significant number of patients, Stokes was appointed personal physician to Governor Jose Figueroa. Within a year, the governor was dead. Stokes’ sons confronted him over his crimes and he ingested poison, falling lifeless at their feet. The adobe home in which Stokes lived still stands and every so often a man dressed in 1800s garb is seen climbing the stairs and passing through walls. This is the legend of Stokes’ Ghost.
Deep and brooding, this Petite Sirah is brimming with aromas of blackberry, plum and black currant. The intense, jammy fruit provides the drama while subtle notes of mocha and hazlenut bring finesse. Stokes’ Ghost is full-bodied with balanced tannins and a finish that lingers on the palate. This rich, lush wine is just what the doctor ordered.
The Petite Sirah grapes in this wine were harvested at night in the southernmost reaches of the Monterey appellation, an ideal location for growing this dramatic, heart-stopping variety. Upon arrival to the winery, the grapes were crushed and fermented in small lots to extract the full flavors and tannin structure for which Petite Sirah is so well known. The wine was then pressed and racked at dryness for oak aging.
Aging: Aged in American, French and Hungarian oak for 12 months
Al Scheid first saw untapped potential in Monterey County in 1972 when the wine region was in its infancy. What started as a grape growing operation that sold 100% of its production to other wineries today has evolved into a grapes-to-glass family business that crafts authentic and elegant wines. Our Scheid Family Wines portfolio now includes five unique and distinctive labels: Scheid Vineyards, District 7, Metz Road, VDR and Stokes’ Ghost.
With 12 estate vineyards comprised of 4,000 acres located along a 70-mile spread of the Salinas Valley, the array of microclimates and soils give us an incredible selection to work with each vintage. While our wealth of vineyard resources is exceptional, it is our employees that are at the heart of everything we do. Much of our workforce has been with us for over 25 years, with several of our vineyard managers employed for over 40 years.
This Stokes’ Ghost 2019 Petite Sirah is young and it is delicious. While I try to write as objectively as possible and stick to specific attributes and whatnot, I’m going to get to the point and say this is a wonderful petit sirah.
Describing the pop and pour for this is a bit silly since it develops so quickly. Freshly opened at cellar temp this is a smooth petit sirah that’s almost muted, with a friendly plum on my palate. There’s no harshness, no booze on the nose (nice legs though). I’m thinking I can’t wait for this to open up (I’ll defer to others on aging potential).
And it does open up with a wonderful cassis flavor. Still very smooth, still no boozy nose, just more rounded and very full bodied. Acidity and tannins are right in the middle.
I’d happily pay the 3 bottle price from one of the local high end grocery stores or wine shops. But that case price? Heck yea we grabbed a dozen. I feel like it was insider trading after having this sample bottle!
Thanks for the opportunity to share our thoughts on this one!
@ludwigmace Well, that is an encouraging rat report. I was concerned by the phrase “intense, jammy” in the main page of the offer, but your report does make it sound more balanced, pleasant, and, honestly, better. Maybe you should write the winery descriptions for them! (see, I don’t generally find “jammy” desirable in wines, so I was about to dismiss this offer, but now I’m thinking probably a “yes”)
@pmarin Funny I wanted to start from a blank slate and forgot to read the description! While it does have a bit of “jammy” in there, I wouldn’t describe it as such. It’s certainly not an in your face jamfest which, although not my personal favorite, I do grudgingly drink with my jam-loving better half from time to time.
I hope there’s another rat out there, I’d love to hear someone else’s take!
@karenhynes Yes indeedee doo. Things are good, hope with you too. My cellar was so stocked with times running out stash I haven’t been purchasing much but fav whites here and there when I had a hankering. I was down there yesterday and was like Dooh, I’m down to a few ready to drinks and some long terms. Time to reload
@coynedj I was hoping for a 3-way split, but I’d do a 2-way split. I don’t have the free shipping deal - if you do, maybe you could place the order and I’ll pick it up next time I’m in town. I have to warn you, it might be some weeks - I don’t get up to the Twin Cities as often as I did pre-Covid. Let me know.
I am requesting a “push” here – winemaker? probably not likely if not here already. 2nd Rat – same thing.
I’m pretty sure this is a great deal at the cs price. With uncertainty, not at the partial price. And yet the uncertainty makes it harder to commit to a case. The extra boxes I still find in my living room and workshop/garage don’t help encourage me because they scream “you don’t need more wine.”
Therefore my quandary. I like PS in general and I remember when it was highlighted on the old W site and I discovered it. On the other hand, I stay away from “Intense, Jammy” and though Rat#1 (1 of 1) actually was encouraging, I kind-of question the intent of the winemaker or marketing person who wrote that description.
Also, at my age, and as many others here may also have consulted with cardiologists for medical care, do I really want to seek a wine of the “dramatic, heart-stopping variety?” And especially a case of it. I’m pretty sure a “case of heart-stopping” would just be on a coroner’s report and actually not something I’d have to worry about in wine tasting notes. So that’s nice.