Hello friends. In Jeb Dunnuck’s recently-released annual set of reviews for Wine Advocate, there was a winery that kept turning up over and over again in the upper echelon: Force Majeure. Three of the strongest-reviewed wines in the issue are Syrahs that we offered earlier this year; we’re going to reoffer that trio today.
My understanding is that each of these three wines is available in “some” quantity. Rather than trying to nail down how much of each we have access to, I’m going to hit Send, see what our list’s actual demand is, and then advocate on y’all’s behalf for as much as possible.
Please note: we need to send our numbers to the Force Majeure folks Tuesday morning, so please try to get all order requests in by Monday night.
My original notes: The finale for the CS III, which is a 100% Syrah, made from four clones of the grape, by Mike MacMorran of Mark Ryan Winery. Just 130 cases produced, and it clocks in at 14.9% listed alc. It pours inky black-purple, and offers a mildly reductive nose of black plum, black pepper, and woodsmoke. A big, rich powerhouse, this is like Washington’s version of Mollydooker Shiraz, a Red Mountain Blue Eyed Boy. The balance of structure tilts more towards tannin here than in any of the other Syrahs on offer today. Opulently textured, with density and intensity to spare, this is unapologetically delicious.
My original notes: This is both debut and finale for Collaboration Series VII, a Syrah made with our pal Chris Peterson from Avennia. Chris cofermented 97% Syrah with 2% Roussanne and 1% Viognier, and his version clocks in at 14.7% listed alc. Coming from the same vintage/vineyard as the CS III, this could not be a more different expression of Syrah. It is high-toned, with floral lift on a deep core of boysenberry fruit and dusty mineral. Jeb says he had multiple “wows” in his notes for CS III; mine were reserved for CS VII. I was seduced by the live-wire energy, the way the wine hummed across the palate, full of electricity. It’s a seamless palate-stainer that charms with its verve and nervy character. The mix of dusty earth and purple fruit is just right. Chris’ talent for emphasizing the ribald, earthy side of Syrah shines through here.
My original notes: This is 100% Syrah grown at Force Majeure’s estate site high up on Red Mountain, in ankle-busting territory. Fermentations were done by Mike MacMorran, and the wine was finished by Todd Alexander, who is the current Force Majeure winemaker. It pours into the glass inky black-purple and comes roaring up out of the glass with a nose of mixed berries, silty earth, and wonderful smoky charcuterie, with some floral topnotes as well. The palate intensity is just wild here, as this one fans out and coats every nook of the palate. It’s such a broad, pleasurable wine, with nary a shred of excess weight. Complex, deeply-stuffed, and densely-layered, this is a very impressive expression of a special piece of Washington terroir. The best is yet to come for this wine.
Please order what you like, and we’ll do our best to fulfill all requests. The wines should arrive in a week or two, at which point they will be ready for pickup or shipping during the next temperature-appropriate shipping window.