Awarded 94 points and Highly Recommended status by Decanter in their November 2020 expert review tasting of South African Syrah/Shiraz (see blue link below).
Lismore Estate, Cape South Coast Syrah 2017 - November 2020 Decanter review
Samantha O'Keefe left California with dreams of starting a family and finding paradise. Tucked into the foothills of a dramatic mountain range at the bottom of Africa, Lismore Estate Vineyards was born alongside her nascent family. A passionate vision, combined with vines planted at 300 metres, which are chilled by winter snow and nourished by the African summer sun, produces classic, cool climate wines which are rich, complex and lovingly hand crafted.
The vineyards are planted on slopes at the base of the Riviersonderend Mountain Range, where the Syrah is planted in heavy schist soils with no irrigation. The combination of elevation and climate make for an extended ripening period which is approximately three to four weeks later than the more traditional wine growing areas in the Western Cape. Extreme diurnal temperature shifts in these vineyards promote complexity, depth and concentration and presents a Syrah that has a very distinct sense of place.
The 2017 vintage was a balanced year in Greyton. Warm dry weather conditions throughout the vintage helped to reduce disease pressure. However the cooler nights helped to lengthen the ripening period and retain balancing acidity. Sufficient rainfall ensured the vines were healthy and harvest period was dry. 2017 produced smaller yields of concentrated berries delivering excellent varietal characteristics.
The grapes were picked at optimal ripeness. 40% were fermented in whole bunches in small open vats and 60% were destemmed and fermented in a 5,000 litre wooden fermenter with gentle pigeage (cap immersion) throughout. The free run wine was drained off and the fermented grapes were then pressed in a traditional wooden basket press. The wine was racked into barrels where malolactic fermentation took place, then blended into a 3,000 litre wooden vat, where the wine was aged for 10 months.
This wine is 100 % Syrah.
An exotic experience which shifts your mind to another place. Cassis, blackberry and cherry on the nose with hints of white pepper, ground herbs and the strong floral perfume of crushed violets. Light and elegant, but structured with a fresh acidity.
Delicious with a slow-roasted shoulder of lamb and gratin dauphinoise; wood-fired pigeon or a warm lentil salad with Portobello mushrooms. To experience the best this wine has to offer, decanting is suggested.
This wine is suitable for vegetarians and vegans.