New Release: Reserve Hilltop Shiraz 2017
Our new Shiraz has a dark reddish-purple hue and displays characters typical to the wines found in the Rhone Valley in France. The nose is fragrant with crush pink peppercorns, clove spice and red berry aromas. Subtle hints of cedar and violets add to the complexity and the palate is savoury, but not meaty, with an unexpected sweet and tangy twist towards the end.
The 2017 ripening season started slow and although drought was a big concern, crop levels were higher than those harvested in 2016. Cooler nights and warmer, drier days yielded healthier, smaller berries with great concentration and colour. Grape analysis look very promising and this year, has produced wines of exceptional quality.
Grapes were sourced from a property in the Franschoek Valley which is enclosed on three sides by towering mountains. The shadows cast by these mountains help neutralise the effect of this region's warm climate. Soils vary from alluvial with granite deposits on the higher slopes to sandy, well-drained soils on the lower parts. The blocks are east facing and receives lots of morning sun. Rainfall = 860mm. Elevation = 300-400m.
The bunches were sorted before destemming and crushing of the grapes. One part was inoculated with commercial yeast strains while the rest was fermented naturally in stainless steel tanks. Flavour and colour development was achieved by regular pump-overs, 3 times daily and temperatures never exceeded 25 degrees Celsius. Second fill 225L French and American oak barrels (85%/15%) were used for maturation and the wine aged for 14 months before final blending and bottling proceeded.
This wine will pair perfectly with a roasted quail, braised beef short-rib or Shiitake risotto with black truffles.