In a year when the life and work of famed South African artist, JH Pierneef is celebrated at La Motte with a tribute exhibition, the exceptional performance of the estate’s premium Pierneef Syrah Viognier, named after the renowned artist, is quite relevant.
Consistently rated under South Africa’s best in previous vintages, the recently released 2015 Pierneef Syrah Viognier has been acknowledged as one of the Top 100 Wines of South Africa and as one of the Top 12 Shiraz wines in the country by the Shiraz SA Wine Challenge. The wine also received recognition with a Double Platinum award by Top 100 Wines of South Africa, a Gold Medal in the Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show and 100 points in the SA Wine Index. (See Awards list)
Passionate about Rhône-style blends, Cellarmaster Edmund Terblanche is delighted about optimising the ideal growing conditions of the 2015 vintage. The preceding winter was wet and cold for decent dormancy, followed by dry, windy conditions resulting in a smaller harvest and enhanced concentration. With the absence of heat waves, the combination of these factors promised exceptional quality.
A blend of 54% Syrah from Walker Bay, 40% Syrah from Elim and 6% Viognier from Franschhoek, the Syrah was harvested at different times, but always together with some Viognier to ensure co-fermentation. The wine was matured in 300-litre French oak barrels, 75% new, for 14 months.
Concentrated tannins from Walker Bay combine with the characteristic spiciness of Elim and result in a wine with a complex flavour profile and good colour. The intense aromas include mulberry, spice, rose perfume and green pepper corn. The wine is exceptionally balanced and its polished tannins ensure a velvety texture and fresh finish.
With its rich, but elegant character, this red-and-white blend is a versatile partner to food. The spice of the Syrah and the floral influence of the Viognier allow the wine to complement the confident flavours of beef, venison, charcuterie and aromatic curries, the subtleties of quail and duck and even the sweetness of reduced fruit flavours.
A limited production, the 2015 Pierneef Syrah Viognier was bottled on the estate and 13 500 6-bottle cases were released.