La Motte has a keen appreciation of history and heritage – especially when it comes to wine. No surprise then, with its interesting and debated origin, Shiraz has become a focus point for the estate.
Through the years legends about the origins of Shiraz or Syrah as it is often called, have abounded. There was a time when it was generally believed that this grape variety originated in ancient Persia (present-day Iran) in the town of Shiraz. Historians were of the opinion that it was brought from the Middle East to Marseilles approximately 560 BC. One of the theories was also that Roman legions from Egypt carried it to Syracuse on the island of Sicily and yet another that it found its way into France through Crusaders from Cyprus returning from the Middle East in the 13th century.
However, these turned out to be nothing but romantic tales as in the late 90’s it was declared that Shiraz actually originated from France. Using DNA testing, grapevine identification experts Carole Meredith, a professor at the University of California at Davis, and Jean-Michel Boursiquot of L’Ecole Nationale Superiore Agronomique de Montpellier, made the conclusive announcement in 2001 at a convention of the American Society of Enology and Viticulture. Shiraz, it was proclaimed, is the offspring of two obscure French varieties, Dureza and Mondeuse Blanche – the former native to the Ardéche and the latter native to the Savoie.
And although the true tale might be less romantic, the varietal certainly kept its seductive powers. Presented with the quality fruit of the Western Cape and with a love of the elegant style of its French origin, Shiraz-aficionados, La Motte CEO Hein Koegelenberg and Cellar Master and Chairman of the South African Shiraz Association, Edmund Terblanche have had many successes with this varietal and the 2010 La Motte Shiraz promises nothing less.
The growing season for the 2010 vintage is deemed to have been extremely difficult, but optimal Shiraz terroir, timely picking at the correct ripeness and blending with complementary varieties ensured that the 2010 La Motte Shiraz is a well-balanced complex wine with a certain freshness and finesse. The blend includes 5% Grenache, 5% Temperanillo, 3% Cinsaut and 2% Carignan.
50% of the grapes originate from Walker Bay, 30% from Franschhoek, 15% from Swartland and 5% from Paarl. The vineyards all have macro climates and grow in a large variety of soil types with each terroir making a unique contribution.
Hand-sorted whole berries were pumped into an open stainless steel tank and cool fermented while pumping over allowed thorough aeration. Malolactic fermentation was completed in 300-litre French oak barrels (30% new) followed by a 14-month maturation period.
The nose offers typical Shiraz aromas of aniseed, nutmeg and white pepper with raspberry fruit. A beautiful partner to venison, spicy pâtés and more exotic choices like guinea fowl, the 2010 La Motte Shiraz is also exceptional with roast beef or lamb.
Alcohol 13.75% vol
Residual sugar 3.3 g/l
Total acidity 5.7 g/l
The 2010 La Motte Shiraz is available at the cellar door for R131 per bottle.
To buy: http://bit.ly/13WEot1