Media and Petite producers… You’re invited… (Email Jo Diaz ~ jo @

At this year’s Ninth Annual Petite Sirah Symposium, Concannon Vineyard has added one more event.

The night before the Symposium, on July 25, 2011, following PS I Love You’s annual meeting (5:00 p.m.), the folks at Concannon are hosting a Reception and Tribute Dinner in Jim Concannon’s honor at 6:00 p.m.,  for Jim being the adoptive American father of Petite Sirah.

It was Jim Concannon who was the first to embrace Petite Sirah as a variety, taking it from the obscurity of its hearty Burgundy days, and recognizing it as more than a simple blending grape. It was he who first labeled Petite Sirah as such in 1964 with a 1961 vintage, pleasing his southern California retailer friend Denny Caldwell. Jim produced about 800 cases of his first Petite, and Denny blew through it faster than Jim had ever imagined. The rest is a 50 year history of Jim’s love for the variety and the way he cared for it every step of the way. That first day he crafted his Petite Sirah, little did he know that one day there would be an advocacy group for this cultivar, and his family’s namesake winery would be leading the way with an annual educational forum, now in its tenth season (one year was skipped, as the location changed from Foppiano Vineyards to Concannon).

Now, this tribute dinner is going to pay homage to the man who began it all, and it’s fittingly happening on his 80th birthday… So, you know there will be cake involved ~ hopefully chocolate ~ to go with Petite Sirah. All of the vintners who are attending the symposium the following day have been invited and asked to bring a bottle of their own best Petite, to share in the variety of Petite Sirahs that are being produced today. And, most importantly, to toast America’s father of Petite Sirah… Jim Concannon.

There are still some spaces available for the Symposium. Click here for the sign-up page for the Ninth Annual Petite Sirah Symposium. You’re invited to join in the celebration of one of America’s favorite winemaker’s wines and the man who had the first vision of creating Petite Sirah as a stand-alone variety.

If you are a media person, please E-Mail me for more details at Jo @

Those who are attending the symposium so far…



  • Brian Geagan ~ Presenting ~ Canton Cooperage
  • Chris Kinsey ~ Custom Wine Concierge, Custom Tour Concierge
  • Christie Bergman ~ The Secret Wine Shop
  • Christine Thomas ~ Saury Cooperage
  • Douglas Knauer ~ DKV Consulting
  • Elliott Mackey ~ Wine Appreciation Guild
  • Jo and Jose Diaz ~ Diaz Communications
  • John Schilter ~ Heritage Barrels
  • Patricia Schneider ~ Patricia Schneider Associates
  • Wilfred Wong ~ Wine blogger and buyer for BevMo, and wine writer



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