Sierra Vista’s Picpoul Reigns Supreme

Published December 1, 2022

It may be tough to spell but Sierra Vista’s Picpoul Blanc had plenty to say. Picpoul means stings the lip, an homage to its vibrant acidity as high as the Sierras, making them a mouth watering treat on a hot summer day. Sierra Vista’s is all that and broad on the palate like a big red wine or bold rose.


Their mourvedre had a slight whiff of mint chocolate on the nose that met slight green stem with bright balanced berries and plum. It opens wide with balanced tannins and acids. Very delightful. It puts the “more” in mourvedre and pairs with lots of equally balanced foods during the feasts of the holidays.


It’s always impressive when new owners of a vineyard or winery respect its history. The world lost quite a visionary when John MacCready passed on into heaven and earth. The day we toured, the clouds above the vineyard formed peaks like the snow coated Sierras.


The new owners are doing their best to continue his innovative spirit. Their new young winemaker is a like minded visionary. A few highlights from our amazing tour and tasting experience:

  • Grafting new vines onto existing rootstock is a reusable alternative to grubbing up vines and replacing them.
  • Vines were planted with half as much space between them and produced fewer grapes because they were competing with each other for nutrients but produced more complex flavors.
  • At the same time, twice as many plants produce the same yield. The sacrifice may be that machine harvesting is more difficult but twice as many grapes come from the same land.

More vineyard adventures from my time in this region.


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