Grapes for our Boekenhoutskloof Syrah are picked from selected parcels of the finest Syrah, grown at our Swartland farms, namely Porseleinberg (88%) and Goldmine (12%), close to the small town of Riebeek-Kasteel. The Porseleinberg vineyards are planted on an extremely hard and rocky bedrock of decomposed Mica-Schist – a unique terroir within the appellation. The vineyards on Goldmine sit on the south-western slopes of the Kasteelberg and comprise of Brown Schist with deposits of Table Mountain Sandstone, which is weathered and washed from the adjacent mountain. The delicate combination of these two properties allow for this expression of both concentrated and structured wines, made from this Rhône grape.
The winter preceding the 2020 Swartland Syrah vintage offered suitable cold units during dormancy, ensuring a good start to the vineyard cycle. As late spring / early summer approached, the vines produced good fruit set, with even berry sizes. A moderately dry growing season followed, delivering average yields. We experienced moderate alcohol levels and lower pH levels, accompanied with bright fruit. Fortunately, 2020 Syrah won’t be remembered for extreme heat spikes which have become somewhat customary in recent years. These tend to put the Swartland harvests under pressure. The contrary provided a supremely elegant vintage for such a warm appellation.
Our Syrah grapes were hand-harvested into lug boxes and transported to Boekenhoutskloof in Franschhoek for vinification. Grapes were cooled in our cold room, then transferred to our tulip-shaped concrete tanks for fermentation. A combination of partially destemmed and whole-bunch (60%) clusters fermented spontaneously with minimal sulphur additions and no acidification. A soft délestage was performed 2-3 times per day. Once maceration is complete, the skins are basket pressed and gravity-fed into traditional 2 500L Austrian oak foudres and 600L demi-muids for further ageing of up to 18 months.
Dark plums, black fruit and an intriguing savoury, gamey character dominate the rich, brooding nose with aromas of olive brine, exotic spice and gentle whiffs of cured meat, cardamom, and violets. Flavours of dark cherry, blackberries and mulberry follow through from the intense core of plummy fruit, with hints of red liquorice, cranberry and Szechuan pepper adding further complexity to the attractive sanguine character. The mid-palate is exceptionally smooth, round and lithe with superb complexity and elegance. The wine is focused, powerful and well-structured, yet shows finesse and plushness, with its silky-soft powdery tannins and perfectly integrated acidity to balance. White pepper, aniseed and cloves linger on a pure, focused finish, with subtle nuances of iron fer and tar.
Analysis: Alc: 14.00 %/vol| RS: 1.90 g/l |TA: 5.00 g/l |pH: 3.87
5 in stock
The Boekenhoutskloof Syrah is sourced from two properties in the Swartland. These two sites (Porseleinberg and Goldmine) were acquired for its unique terroir of rocky bedrock and decomposed mica schist soils. This is only their third vintage claiming Wine of Origin Swartland with the blend comprising of 80% Porseleinberg and 20% Goldmine fruit.
The fruit from each site is vinified separately as each parcel shows distinctive and individual characteristics. The grapes are partially destemmed and ferment spontaneously in tulip shaped concrete tanks with a soft délestage 2-3 times a day. Once cuvaison has been completed, the wine is moved to large traditional 2 500L foudres and 600L demi-muids for further ageing for up to 18 months, depending on the vintage.
Boekenhoutskloof was established in 1776. Located in the furthest corner of the beautiful Franschhoek valley, the farm’s name means “ravine of the Boekenhout” (pronounced Book-n-Howed). Boekenhout is an indigenous Cape Beech tree greatly prized for furniture making.
In 1993 the farm and homestead was bought and restored and a new vineyard planting programme was established that now includes Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Grenache, Semillon and Viognier.