Midnight Oil Syrah (4)

Midnight Oil Syrah 4-Pack
Sold by: Outlier Wine Company
$39.99 $116.00 66% off List Price
2011 Midnight Oil Syrah

Like the price point and low alc. Any RS in this wine. Native yeast and low alc can be a bad combo sometimes.

For 1/2 of one second my heart was a flutter when I saw today’s offer…


A little more info from the winery website:


“Dark red color with classic aromas of white pepper and bacon fat alongside spicy mocha and dark berry fruit flavors.” - Derek Rohlffs, Proprietor & Winemaker

This full-bodied wine features lively acidity and firm tannins, and will compliment lamb, cheddar bacon cheeseburgers, and beef and pepper stew.

Current Release: 2011 Vintage

Appellation: Sonoma County

Varietal: 100% Syrah

Vineyard Notes: Grown in a relatively cool location in Dry Creek Valley, the Syrah was very slow to ripen during the cool and damp 2011 growing season, resulting in extended hang time and a very tame 12.9% alcohol.

Vinification and Aging: French oak aged lots, with a high percentage - 50% - new oak and gentle cellar treatment, including gravity movement.

Tasting Notes: Dark fruit and savory oak spice, with tell-tale pepper notes. A burst of red and black fruit up front and very rich mouthfeel is immediately evident, with fruit and oak-influenced flavors carrying through on the persistent and delicious, mocha-laced finish. Midnight Oil Syrah is both balanced and restrained while also being a bit hedonistic and generous, a truly contradictory wine.

MMMmmmmmm bacon…


Yeah right!!!


Stuck fermentation can happen, leaving RS and potential secondary ferm (I think).

Hi cortot20! No RS on this wine…it happily fermented to dry. Cheers! Derek

Thanks for sharing these notes, kaolis! Want a job at the winery?!? Derek

Native yeasts are not the tried and true strains used by winemakers. Results can be unpredictable. Sometimes they can’t get through all the sugar leaving a bit more RS than desired. Not sure about secondary ferm, I would guess that’s more of a cleanliness issue combined with RS. I love the idea of using the yeast native to the vineyard but I’m not sure I like buying those wines blind.

Hey woottoady. Love the bacon post! One of my favorite tell-tale Syrah characteristics! Derek

Native yeast and high Brix / potential alcohol is also a concern for the same reasons. In this case, the fermentation was easy and the cool 2011 vintage allowed the spicy / savory aromas and flavors to come to the fore alongside the prototypical Syrah black fruit. I love cool-climate / cool-vintage Syrah and this 2011 is a perfect example of that! Derek

Thanks for thoughts. Can you provide a full range of specs for us?

Edit: this really does sound like a nice wine, I’m just not as trust worthy of 2011’s across the board.

Been wanting to try your wines and this may be the offer to finally get me to do it. What’s case production? Technical specs you can share? Thanks!

Sure thing cortot20…Harvest Brix: 23.0, 3.38 pH, 7.9 g/L TA, Native Fermentation, Full Malolactic, Unfined and Unfiltered. And I am finding that our 2011’s are some of my favorite wines from the past five harvests as their structure and low alcohol make them more ageworthy than warmer vintages. Reminds me of everyone loving the fruit-forward, one-dimensional 1997 Napa Cabs but the 1998’s - that were panned by most critics - actually aged better / longer and ultimately resulted in more interesting wines.

Hey losthighwayz…thanks for your note and interest in my wine! 224 cases produced [9 barrels]. And, per my post to cortot20, harvest brix was 23.0, with a 3.38 pH, and 7.9 g/L TA. This wine was fermented with native yeast and underwent full malolactic, and was bottled unfined and unfiltered. Let me know if you have any other questions. Derek

Always open to a chat :wink:

Ok, in. Thanks Derek, I’ll put the purchase on my resume.