2019 Spinifex Syrah
Barossa Valley, South Australia
Vineyard/Year: Spinifex / 2019
If Spinifex is not one of the most exciting Australian producers to have cropped up in the last decade then we don’t know much about wine.
Spinifex’s Syrah is Pete Schell’s take on a leaner, higher-toned expression of his adopted region. To this end, Schell sources from “… generally higher, cooler sites, where earlier harvesting gives wines with bright fruit expression and a textural freshness”.
The wine, naturally fermented with a judicious use of whole clusters (on average 30%) in a combination of stainless steel, wood and concrete fermenters, also sees a shorter maturation than the Esprit and Bête Noir, et al. The 2019 was cropped from five high, exposed parcels in the Barossa and Eden Valleys, where the soils are for the most part light, with varying degrees of gravel and silt and sand. Vine age varies from 20 to 80 years old (averaging around 40 years), and all fruit is hand-harvested.
Wild and savoury yet soft and sumptuous, this is Barossa Shiraz unlike we usually see it. Interesting, flavour-packed and more-ish. Another winner from this superstar winemaker.
“This is a Barossa and Eden combo of six parcels of vineyard. Incredible value, by my matrix, for this wine. All class, and holds the heft of riper fruit and booziness well. This could be your buy of the year. Choc-cherry scents with brambly notes, earthiness, undergrowth and autumnal mushroom/leafiness too. I like this. Glossy textured, spicy, fine tannins rippling through darker berry fruits, a lick of mocha, but a green-herb/dried-herb note through the wine. Elegant, svelte, fine and very long with an assertively spicy finish. Definitively ‘syrah’ not ‘shiraz’ of this region, if you get my drift. Excellent. Rated: 93+ Points Tasted: June 19 Alcohol: 13.5% Drink: 2019 – 2027” – Mike Bennie, The Wine Front.
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