Primal Scream is entirely Rhône. Primal Scream is big. Big explosive flavors where the Syrah is amplified by the Grenache.
Vintage 2013 winemaker's notes
This is the second time we’ve made Primal Scream with 62 cases produced.
It’s 73% Syrah and 27% Grenache.
Wow. Sorry, let me be more clear. Wow!
As my nose approaches the glass, even before it gets there, there’s blue. A blue note on the nose. Not red fruit, not black. A blue sensation. And it gets bigger and bigger. Hints of smoke. Youth, exuberance. I want my lung capacity to be bigger because the deeper I breathe in, more aromas show up. The first sip is explosive. Syrah is dominant here, showing its velvet texture instead of the silk of Grenache. And the size of the tannin structure speaks of years of aging to come. This is validated by a youthfulness of flavors that beg for food. Meat! Jim has a rib-eye on the grill so I’ll recommend that. The tannin keeps its grip on your palate without drying out, framing fruit notes for minutes.
Vintage 2012 winemaker's notes
This is the first time we’ve made this wine with just 46 cases produced. We were enticed to do so by the 2012 vintage character. It’s the year to go out on a limb! We farm Primal Scream grapes at Terra Bella Vineyard, which at 1800 feet, is the highest Grenache and Syrah in the Paso Adelaida District.
It’s 61% Syrah and 39% Grenache. You could call it the reverse side of the coin of Touchy-Feely! (Same varietals with inverted percentages.) Primal Scream is big where Touchy-Feely is playful and elegant. Primal Scream is the closest a wine from The Farm Winery has come to the traditional Paso “model”, yet neither over-ripe nor losing minerality.
A bigger nose. Not a drop of oak in spite of having spent two years in once-used barrels. Big explosive flavors where the Syrah is amplified by the Grenache. Positive feedback cycle!! Full weight and velvet textures of ripe red fruits. The minerality keeps it going and agile, and keeps the heat within balance. The tannin holds everything upright and muscular. A wine more for sharing with a friend or significant other before the meal than for pairing with the food itself. After two hours decanting time, the mineral character takes a bigger step forward and becomes the dominant force of the wine. This change in the decanter is unexpected. It is not obvious from the initial fruit intensity, that with some air, minerality will become so important. But it does. And it fills us with satisfaction for the ageability it forecasts for Primal Scream in its inaugural vintage.
Vintage 2012 reviews
Absolutely brimming with very deep, unabashedly ripe, blackberry fruit and laced with lots of sweet, yet entirely sympathetic oak, this extravagant Syrah/Grenache blend plays to richness rather than subtlety and is anything but simple or staid. It arguably wanders a little close to the brink of being too much, but it is solidly structured and so sure in fruit that it never once loses its footing. It teases with notes of dark soils and spice behind its juicy immediacy, and it impresses as being a wine with very good places to go if allowed to age.
Hold it for a good half-decade or more.
94 points; Connoisseurs’ Guide to California Wine November 2015
Deep dark aromatics of toasted plum, lavender and briar. The palate has a juicy entry with beautifully layered piquant red fruit, jammy blackberry and sweet note of iodine, graphite, soy and grilled meats. Drink 2016 - 2024.
93 points; purely domestic wine report December 2015
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