Previously known as Grand Rêve, Force Majeure was founded in 2004 by Paul McBride and Ryan Johnson. Force Majeure pairs some of Washington’s highly acclaimed winemakers with fruit from one of Washington’s highly acclaimed vineyards, Ciel du Cheval. The winemakers contributing to the Collaboration Series is a Who’s Who of Washington winemakers including Ben Smith, Carolyn Lakewold, Chris Gorman, James Mantone, Mark McNeilly, Mike McMorran and Ross Mickel.
Made by Ross Mickel of Ross Andrew winery the wine is 48% Grenache, 38% Syrah, 20% Mourvedre, 1% Viognier and 1% Roussanne.
Dark purple in color. 14.4% ABV. Smoke, grilled meats, charcoal and black fruits on an amazing nose. Great mouthfeel and the perfect amount of acidity. Black cherry, game, white pepper, anise and citrus on the palate. Impeccably balanced and complex with tons of structure. I’m hard pressed to recall a better Southern Rhone style blend from the state of Washington. Drink over the next 5-7 years.
My rating: 95 points.
In just a few short years Force Majeure has become one of the top 5 Syrah producers in Washington. The rest of the lineup is pretty stellar as well.
Force Majeure warrants your attention and (as I write this) the winery is still accepting names for their mailing list.
In other news Force Majeure recently announced the hiring of Todd Alexander, formerly of Bryant Family Vineyards, as the winemaker for the Force Majeure Estate wines. Ryan Johnson has left the winery and started a vineyard consulting company. Finally, a new facility for the winery should be up and running in time for the September Release Party. More to come on all of the above.
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