Benguela Cove Estate Syrah x 6
- Tim Atkin MW South African Report 2022: 91 points
- Veritas Wine Awards 2022: Silver Medal
- Platter's Guide 2023: 4.5 Stars
In the vineyards
Planted on contrasting slopes and soil types set the bar for a layered and complex wine to arise from these Walker Bay Syrah vineyards. Poised on the shores of the Bot River Lagoon with vistas of the Atlantic Ocean, ensures a cool, temperate climate. Cool climate Syrah ripens slowly, allowing for longer hang time and subsequent structure and flavour development.
Slope: North facing vineyards | Soil: Iron laterites, granite and chalk rich soils | Clones: SH21, SH22 & SH12
In the Cellar
The grapes were cooled overnight followed by both bunch- and berry sorting the next morning. After three days of cold maceration, the juice was allowed to warm up to 16 C. To enhance the intrinsic qualities of Syrah, a combination of whole bunches and destemmed berries were used, inoculated with selected yeast strains to accentuate spicy and fruity aromas. Alcoholic fermentation lasted eight days during which gentle pump-overs encouraged delicate flavour and colour extraction. Pressed off the skins when fermentation was completed, the wine was settled in the tank and transferred to the barrels for malolactic fermentation to smooth out its edges.
Maturation: 18 months | Oak: 30% new French oak | Production: 43 barrels | Aging potential: 8 years from vintage
True to the varietal grown in cooler climates, one is lured closer by aromas of cherry, marzipan, and violets, a rich perfume, and a savoury gloss with hints of white pepper spice and fynbos. Silky soft tannins add to the finesse with a youthful freshness to perch the bold blueberry fruit flavours. The fruit follows through beautifully with nuances of dark chocolate on the finish that lingers on the palate.
Albeit upfront and evocative, the wine was executed with restaint for a balanced end result. Young yet forthcoming, it is evident the winemaker followed an old-world approach and did not let the oak overpower the honest essence of this wine.