Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Forlorn Hope Wines

Hello friends of Wine Ophelia. I asked winemaker Matthew Rorick of Forlorn Hope Wines if I might share his fall releases with you. ENJOY!

Welcome to the Forlorn Hope 2010 Autumnal Release.

As this season of harvest draws to a close and we prepare ourselves for the coming winter, the Forlorn Hope is pleased to present a trio of Rare Creatures for your enjoyment: Ost-Intrigen, Sogni della Speccia, and Les Deux Mathieux. Each distinctly different from the others in texture, weight, and character, as a group they bring into focus the wondrously diverse potential of the winegrowing regions of northern California.

Introducing the 2008 Sogni della Speccia: Seductively textured field blend from Shale Peak
Veins of vertically upthrust volcanic shale comprise the soil in the remote Solano County Shale Peak Vineyard. These earthen seams form a foundation from which rises fruit of uncommonly pure and resonant character. Just under an acre in size, the plot is planted mainly to Sangiovese with a little Barbera, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Petite Sirah rounding out the cast of characters. This unexpected combination -- varieties grown on a site of rousing geology, in an unheralded and overlooked appellation -- yields a wine which is a testament to California’s still largely unexplored viticultural potential. While co-fermentation seamlessly brings together the disparate elements of this field blend, it is the Sangiovese whose voice rings clearly in the 2008 bottling. Focused, bright, and unrelenting, it unfolds on the palate like a hall of mirrors.

17 cases produced; 10 are available at this offering.
$24/btl, $288/cs.

Return of the Intrigues: 2008 Ost-Intrigen, because you demanded it.

The abrupt disappearance of the 07 Ost-Intrigen following this year’s Vernal Release was no surprise, considering how little of it is produced each year; what did come unexpectedly were the insistent demands that the 08 be made available as soon as possible. Though originally slated for an early 2011 release, the wine is showing so well at this moment that it seemed propitious to acquiesce. Austrian in origin, the St. Laurent winegrape yields an exotically scented and lushly textured wine of unbridled sensual allure. So uncommon in California as to be virtually non-existent—the 90 vines sequestered in Carneros that yield the Ost-Intrigen may in fact be the only ones in the state—this wine is among the rarest of the Rare Creatures.

11 cases produced
$22/btl, $264/cs.

**Please note that the 08 Ost-Intrigen doesn’t appear on the secure online order form at; to place an order for this wine, simply fill out billing and shipping information as usual, and then indicate how many bottles/cases you’d like in the field provided for messages to me at the bottom of the form. Trés simple.

Les Deux, part… deux. The 2006 LDM is now on the loose.

This time, it’s for real! The 2006 Les Deux Mathieux is finally, officially released. “Accidentally” pre-released in a warehouse mix-up a year ago, some of you might have gotten your hands on a bottle of this long-lived Petite Sirah even before I did. Now, though, this wine -- the beginning of the whole Forlorn Hope project -- is ready to showcase its second vintage. Dense, powerful and brooding, it follows in the footsteps of the 05 in its exhibition of the captivating balance of power and finesse that is a hallmark of the vineyard. Delicious now, the 06 LDM will continue to evolve in bottle for a decade or more.

97 cases produced
$42/btl, $504/cs.

Fall Six-Pack with free shipping

For the 2010 Autumnal Release we are pleased to offer the friends of the Forlorn Hope free shipping with the purchase of two bottles each of the 08 Ost-Intrigen, 08 Sogni della Speccia and 06 Les Deux Mathieux. Just include a message for me at the end of the order form that says “Fall Six-Pack with free shipping” and it’s on. Wine cost: $176 plus tax.

Click here to order your Forlorn Hope wines

As always, we thank you for your interest in the Rare Creatures of the Forlorn Hope collection. It is our great pleasure to continue to produce natural wines that are the pure expression of the relationship between site and vine, offering a diverse array of alternatives to the ordinary and overproduced. We enjoy nothing more than sharing them with you.

Please contact us directly if you have any questions regarding the wines, the Forlorn Hope collection, events, private tastings and winemaker dinners.

We look forward to hearing from you.