Last Friday, the quiet outer reaches of the East Bay’s quaintest town, Alameda, rolled up its carpets and tipped its glasses for Dark & Delicious, a celebration of Petite Sirah and all of its devoted admirers.  PS I Love You, the luscious wine’s advocacy group brought together a fabulous swath of 40 wine companies to showcase their Dark & most Delicious Petit Sirah vintages. Though the cold, rainy evening was another sort of D & D (mainly, dark and damp), the event’s turnout was vast, and spirits were certainly high. Gathered under the cavernous warehouse of the Rock Wall Wine Company, the event drew hundreds of aficionados and curious novices alike, to taste their way through a veritable carnival of flavors—all showcasing the nuanced and charming character of Petite Sirah.

To compliment the heady delight of the wine (and to aid in the swooning of the foodie side of most winos), incredible food pairings were offered, showcasing the versatility of the wine and the culinary mastery of its devotees.  Sponsored by The National Pork Board, it was a veritable “pig heaven” of everything from rich, fragrant paella and succulent pork tacos slathered with caramelized Petite Sirah, to wine-infused truffles and out-of-control gourmet fudge.

If the celebratory animation of the event seemed heightened, it certainly wasn’t without reason.  This year marked the 50th Anniversary of Petite as a variety, proving you don’t have to be one of the old boys to pack the big guns.  And for that matter, the relatively young variety wasn’t too old to mark the event with lots and lots of cupcakes. Rising to the occasion with style, Kara’s Cupcakes, the official cake sponsor, served up sweet confections to the droves of happy participants from the window of a festively outfitted “KaraVancupcake truck (to everyone’s delight, San Franciscan and New Yorker alike).


While next year turning 51 might not have quite the same ring as the big five-oh, after having lived it up and thrown it back with the PS I Love You folks, Dark & Delicious is one yearly celebration I am not going to miss.  Heck, I will probably celebrate it quite regularly, at home, with my own little bottle of something dark and delicious.

– Ava Fedorov

Photographs by Jeffery Owens for Socially Superlative