Full Pull Mark Ryan

Hello friends. We have a pair of well-reviewed reds from the upper echelon of the Mark Ryan lineup today, but before we get to those, let’s sneak in what has become a popular white wine from this portfolio:

2015 Mark Ryan Viognier

This Viognier has developed into something of a list favorite, and this is now the fifth vintage in a row that we’ve offered. It comes from Ciel du Cheval, Red Willow, and Olsen fruit. Listed alc is 14.4%. For a winery that produces such bold, muscular reds, you always expect this to be a fat, oily version of Washington Viognier. Instead it never seems to be anything of the kind, instead offering a juicy mix of stone fruits and ginger.

Vinous (Stephen Tanzer): “[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 91pts.”

2014 Mark Ryan Lost Soul Syrah Red Willow Vineyard

We don’t offer every vintage of this one, because it’s small production (350 cases, compared to more than a thousand cases for wines like Dead Horse), and the timing has to be just right. Raised entirely in large 500L French puncheons (about half new) for 18 months, it clocks in at 14.8% listed alc and immediately charms with its smoke-inflected nose: bacon fat and peat moss over a core of blackberry fruit and black olive salinity. A supple easy drinker, very true to the generous ’14 vintage, this deftly mixes its fruit and earth notes. The best Red Willow Syrahs capture an elusive fecundity that this special site allows, and this is a delightful example of the kind.

Wine Advocate (Jeb Dunnuck): “[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 93-95pts.”

2014 Mark Ryan Dead Horse Cabernet Sauvignon

For the fourth year in a row, Dead Horse gets Cabernet Sauvignon on the label, as its proportion exceeds the 75% threshold. In 2014 it’s a full 85% Cab, the remainder Merlot, Cab Franc, and Petit Verdot. The fruit, from four stellar Red Mountain sites – Ciel du Cheval, Klipsun, Obelisco, Quintessence – sees 21 months in French oak (about two-thirds new), and it clocks in at 15.0% listed alc. I was completely smitten with the nose of this particular Dead Horse, because it emphasizes the savory/leafy side of Cabernet, with clear tones of tobacco leaf and black tea leaf, beetroot and rhubarb to complement a traditional crème de cassis core. Pillowy soft on attack and mid-palate, this is a reverse-mullet wine: all fun on the front end, all business on the back end, with the toothsome tannnis offering structural scaffolding for each mouthful of delicious, palate-staining Cabernet fruit.

Wine Advocate (Jeb Dunnuck): “[REVIEW TEXT WITHHELD]. 93-95pts.”

First come first served up to 36 bottles total (mix and match as you like), and 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.

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