This is the vintage we’ve been waiting for. In the Overberg, especially the Hermanus area was a superb year for all varietals. Across South Africa it was equally great, but more for white varietals. This is the vintage you want to stock your wine cellar with. The 2016 season was preceded by an exceptionally dry year in 2015, which, we learned with hind-sight was to be the first year of the Western Cape’s three-year drought. The vines were resilient, though yields were down 15% on the previous vintage, with no notable heat-waves experienced until some weeks after harvesting our Syrah. Being so high up on the Hemel en Aarde Road means we tend to avert the worst of the heat and rainfall remains fairly consistent, even in ‘dry’ years. Vinification The Syrah was fermented in stainless steel tanks for about 2 weeks. Pump-overs, to aerate the wine and supply oxygen to the yeast, were done twice daily until the wine was finished with alcoholic fermentation. The wine was then moved to 2nd and 3rd fill, French oak barrels and the wine was left to mature for 15 months. There was a portion of the fruit harvested that was fermented separately and post alcoholic fermentation it was left on the skins for a few days, ‘extended skin contact’, after which it was pressed and put into barrel to age separate from the other Syrah lots. Blending of the different barrel lots was done later in early 2017.