Force Majeure Parabellum Coulee 2016
Blend: 75% Syrah, 25% Mourvedre
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
A red with style and presence, offering a big but refined structure, with vibrant blackberry, smoky meat and cracked pepper flavors that build plushness and richness on the finish. Syrah and Mourvèdre. Drink now through 2027.
The entry-level Rhône blend is the 2016 Parabellum Coulee, composed of 75% Syrah and 25% Mourvèdre brought up in 50% new French oak. It's a beautifully pure, elegant wine that has terrific notes of blueberries, smoked herbs, hints of bacon fat, and spring flowers. It's ripe and has a slightly more forward, seamless texture than the top cuvée, with remarkable purity and a great finish.
Composed of Syrah and Mourvèdre, the 2016 Parabellum Coulée has an open-knit nose of black raspberry liqueur and soft expressions of cured meat with subtle oak tones that waft from the glass. Medium to full-bodied in the mouth, the wine has an open and approachable core with balanced tannins, ending with a lingering finish of black fruit and soft oak tones. This is a tasty wine that's meant to be drunk sooner rather than later. 300 cases produced.
This Herculean effort involved the careful matching of varietal and clonal selections, trellising and irrigation to the nine distinct soil types formed by the ancient Missoula floods, winds and volcanic activity. The outcome is a vineyard articulated into many small "micro-blocks," to meet the management demands of this unique and dynamic site. Due to the rough, rocky nature of the acreage and elevations ranging from 960 to 1,230 feet, mechanization is virtually impossible in the upper portion of Force Majeure, requiring true "farming by hand." Yet the lower blocks of the vineyard are comprised of deep, well-drained Warden soils.
Thus, the diversity of our vineyard results in a versatility that allows us to grow a variety of compelling fruit characterized by stunning intensity, depth and concentration, complex flavors and fine tannins. We nurture a variety of Bordeaux and Rhone varietals at this special site and look forward to sharing, quite literally, the "fruits of our labor" with you.
A coveted source of top quality red grapes among premier Washington producers, the Red Mountain AVA is actually the smallest appellation in the state. As its name might suggest, it is actually neither a mountain nor is it composed of red earth. Instead the appellation is an anticline of the Yakima fold belt, a series of geologic folds that define a number of viticultural regions in the surrounding area. It is on the eastern edge of Yakima Valley with slopes facing southwest towards the Yakima River, ideal for the ripening of grapes. The area’s springtime proliferation of cheatgrass, which has a reddish color, actually gives the area the name, "Red" Mountain.
Red Mountain produces some of the most mineral-driven, tannic and age-worthy red wines of Washington and there are a few reasons for this. It is just about the hottest appellation with normal growing season temperatures commonly reaching above 90F. The soil is particularly poor in nutrients and has a high pH, which results in significantly smaller berry sizes compared to varietal norms. The low juice to skin ratio in smaller berries combined with the strong, dry summer winds, leads to higher tannin levels in Red Mountain grapes.
The reds of the area tend to express dark black and blue fruit, deep concentration, complex textures, high levels of tannins and as previously noted, have good aging capabilities.
With bold fruit flavors and accents of sweet spice, Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre form the base of the classic Rhône Red Blend, while Carignan, Cinsault and Counoise often come in to play. Though they originated from France’s southern Rhône Valley, with some creative interpretation, Rhône blends have also become popular in other countries. Somm Secret—Putting their own local spin on the Rhône Red Blend, those from Priorat often include Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. In California, it is not uncommon to see Petite Sirah make an appearance.