Wine Offering: Faury Saint Joseph (Syrah)

by Mark Patykewich on October 10, 2018

As we head in to fall, oh I am wishing for cooler weather.  Not cold, just a little cooler to enjoy grilling without sweating.  Anyway, I digress! As the weather cools and the holidays approach, I love a nice bottle of Syrah.  I enjoy the rich fruit notes, the deep brambly texture, just a hint of smoke or gaminess all in a broad but caressing tannic structure.  The steep slopes of the Northern Rhone is where Syrah can take on the elegance of Pinot Noir in Burgundy. Lionel Faury is producing just this type of wine.
This fruit is from hill side slopes and granite soils.  This gives the wine both lift and power.  The power is in the dense flavors and aromatics of the wine.  Hints f dried flowers lead to dark dried fruit notes and a bit of wood smoke on the nose.  This is similar on the palate but with deeper plum, dried black berry, cassis and black olive and white pepper notes. Air time is certainly rewarded, so decant or open the bottle when you start prepping dinner. But, Lionel Faury wines never have an overbearing tannic structure.
I’m also a sucker for a little stem inclusion, which this wine has.  To me, wines made this embody in liquid form the French phrase “je ne sais quoi” and are as enticing as Mona Lisa’s smile. For this wine, Lionell uses between 25% and 40% depending on the harvest, there is never more than 10% new oak in the rotation of barrels and the result is  an elegant wine of good structure and multi-faceted aromas.  It is accessible now, very much so with and hour or two in the decanter, but will develop nicely over the next year and drink well for 6 or 8 more.  At $33 it is a bargain for a quality Northern Rhone wine and ready to drink now or rest in a corner of your house for a few years.  Grill some lamb, makes some ratatouille and mash some potatoes, this is the wine for that type of meal.

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