2021 Storm Point Red Blend, Swartland, South Africa
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60% Cinsault, 35% Syrah, 5% Carignan
Bright raspberry, briary and tertiary scented bouquet highlighted by a campari-esque note with a gravelly undertone. There is vibrancy and clarity to the nose and palate. Flavors are fresh and uplifting with morello cherry, wild lavender and orange zest to finish. It is a bit richer than previous vintages but with more firm tannins and still a refined, high-toned finish.
The weathered landscape of South Africa is the result of millions of years of battering storms. Storms that stirred in the waters off of the ‘Cape of Good Hope.’ That name is recent as historically it was known as the ‘Cabo das Tormentas’ or ‘Cape of Storms.’ In 1488 Bartolomeu Dias made the first modern rounding of the cape. Hundreds of previous attempts were made but the rugged lands of South Africa were protected by the rough seas and punishing storms. This ‘Storm Point’ remains a fabled place to this day. The unruly landscape and intense growing season of the Swartland is the bedrock for this wine. 2021 was a tremendous vintage for reds in the Swartland. Loads of ripe fruit, but with really firm tannins and all with bright acid and moderate alcohol…really a dream vintage.
Transparent Cinsault serves as the blank canvas for the wine with Syrah and Carignan painting the deeper colors. The grapes were hand harvested from early to mid-February and destemmed to tank, though roughly a quarter of the Syrah was left whole cluster. Gentle extraction through light pumpovers occurred for nearly two weeks with ML occurring naturally in the spring. It was matured in both tank and neutral French barriques for ten months. It was bottled without fining or filtration and just a dose of sulfur at bottling.