Grapes for our Boekenhoutskloof Syrah are from selected parcels of the finest Syrah planted on our Swartland farms, namely Porseleinberg and Goldmine. These vineyards grow on the rocky bedrock of decomposed Mica-Schist, a unique terroir expressed by the concentrated and structured wines. The 2018 vintage was the third consecutive drought year and proved to be the most normal since our maiden Swartland vintage in 2015. This harvest yielded more consistent tonnages than previous years which was evident by the healthy, less stressed vines. Day temperatures were notably warmer and night temperatures colder than usual due to the dry conditions with less than half our average rainfall. Harvest commenced during the second week of February and looked very promising from the onset with little to no adverse weather conditions. These growing conditions produced very healthy Syrah, resulting in less skin-to-pulp ratio producing wines with slightly lower alcohols and more elegant, perfumed fruit and excellent technical analyses.
Our Syrah is hand-harvested into lug boxes and transported to Boekenhoutskloof in Franschhoek for vinification. Grapes are cooled in our cold room then transferred to our tulip-shaped concrete tanks for fermentation. A combination of partially destemmed and whole-bunch (40%) clusters ferment spontaneously with minimal sulphur additions and no acidification. A soft delestage is 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.