A Perissos Gem
On the list of wineries Susan & I have want to visit, Perissos is near the top. We had seen their Petite Sirah and their Aglianico both mentioned favorably in Texas Monthly. To my happy surprise, even before I could visit the winery, I encountered Texas wine enthusiasts, Laura and Jim Arnold.
In addition to pointing me toward resources to advance my exploration of Texas wine, they were kind enough to pass along a bottle of Perissos Dolcetto, made from fruit grown in the Texas High Plains AVA. Susan happened to have two beef filets Bernhard Meat Market cut for us a day or two earlier. What a wonderful confluence of events!
First impression: the Perissos Dolcetto is an absolute gem. I'm eager to try again, since clearly no wine was left after dinner. Compared to Dolcetto from DOCs in Italy's Piemonte, my sense was more extraction, more prominent tannins, higher alcohol (at 13.9%, well above the DOCs superiore threshold of 12.5%), and more oak influence.
That said, comparison to Italy's light, young Dolcettos does this wine an injustice. Peruses' Dolcetto is a lovely, thoughtfully crafted wine, with fruit sourced from a specific AVA and vineyard to achieve what the winemaker was seeking. After being in the glass for 15-20 minutes, gorgeous fruit emerged.
In retrospect, I also think my initial perception of prominent tannins was textural—minerality, perhaps? Whatever the case, all elements came into balance: fruit, earth/minerality, wood, acid, alcohol, and tannins—to produce a wonderful wine experience. Kudos Perissos!