Founded by Chris and Andrea Mullineux in 2007, this winery is now one of the most lauded in South Africa. Named ‘Winery of the Year’ four times by the Platter Guide in 2014, 2016, 2019 and 2020, Mullineux were also Tim Atkin MW’s ‘South African Winemakers of the Year’ in 2016. They chose the town of Riebeek-Kasteel, just west of Malmesbury in the Swartland, for its old vineyards on granite and schist soils, reasoning that, with such quality fruit, they would be able to make outstanding wines. It is an understatement to say they have been proved right. At the top of their quality ladder are the Single Terroir wines, made from small parcels of old vines, usually dry farmed on the ancient granite, quartz, schist or iron based soils of the Swartland.
Fruit for this Syrah comes from a single parcel of sustainablyfarmed, 20-year-old vines planted in the stony shale and schistbased soils of Mullineux's farm, Roundstone, on the Kasteelberg. This parcel of Syrah gives the best expression of the Kasteelberg soil's density and structure.
2017 was the second vintage of the Great Drought in the Cape and yields were again significantly lower than normal. The highpressure weather cell lying over central Southern Africa did not move, causing continued, below-average levels of rainfall in both winter and summer as it buffeted cold fronts away from the Cape. However, by improving soil health with cover crops and mulch and by reducing crops early, the resulting wines have lovely concentration but also wonderful freshness.
Grapes were first chilled in Mullineux's cold room before the whole bunches were put into open top, 500 litre French oak barrels and crushed by foot to release some juice. Minimal SO2 was added and, as with all their wines, no further additions were made. After about four days, fermentation began with indigenous yeasts and lasted about 10 days. Following a further four weeks of skin contact, the wine was drained and pressed to barrel for malolactic fermentation and maturation. The cap was punched down once a day before, during and after fermentation to achieve ideal extraction. In spring the wine was racked for ageing. It spent 12 months in 500 litre French oak barrels, of which 25% were new, followed by nine months in second fill Foudre. The wine spent nine months in bottle before release.
This is the most structured Syrah in Mullineux's Single Terroir range and this vintage is packed with dark fruit and has a broad but focused palate with lovely tannic grip. The finish is fresh, long and supple.
|Bottle Sizes||75cl, 150cl|
|Notes||Sustainable, Vegan, Vegetarian