Petit verdot is one of those grapes the average wine drinker doesn’t think of too often. Usually it shows up in Bordeaux-style blends as a complementary player to cabernet sauvignon, merlot, and the like. When I talk to winemakers, they often mention that in those blends a little petit verdot goes a long way. So in the rare instance when one is bottled as a single varietal offering it could well be worth paying attention. That was the case with one from Chile that I recently drank.
The Viña von Siebenthal 2007 Toknar was produced entirely from fruit sourced in Chile’s Aconcagua Valley. This wine is 100 percent petit verdot. The vines sourced had about 13 years of age on them at the time of harvest. All of the fruit came from a single hillside block that is densely planted. Fermentation took place in small tanks. Barrel aging took place over 24 months in entirely French oak; 12 months of bottle aging followed prior to release. A scant few hundred cases of this wine was produced and less than 100 of those made their way into the United States. This wine has a suggested retail price of $110. The nose of this petit verdot is immense and studded with black and purple fruit aromas. The palate here is lush and velvety with blueberry, plum, blackberry and spices galore. Super long, lusty and very impressive is the only way to describe the finish. This wine has massive structure, depth and power, yet it has finesse and impeccable balance as well. At just under 7 years old, this offering is still a baby. It’ll age well for at least two decades.
Simply put, this wine blew my doors off. I taste a lot of wine every week and the Viña von Siebenthal 2007 Toknar is easily one of a small handful of best and most impressive I’ve tasted recently. If you want to taste an amazing wine, do whatever you can to get your hands on this very limited production gem. It certain to knock you out with its impressiveness and should you be so generous as to share it with friends you’re going to blow their minds.