Dreadnought Syrah, Man O' War, 75cl
This elegant Syrah has a smokey character providing a savoury edge to the overt blueberry, plum and pepper aromas, that mix of savoury and sweet that is classic of the Northern Rhone style. The palate is concentrated and rich but well balanced with vibrant acidity and a streak of minerality – almost a salty character with the wine finishing with a large volume of fine grain tannins.
The Dreadnought Syrah comes from steep hillside vineyards and is carefully hand harvested before delivery to the winery. The fruit is put across a sorting table before being de-stemmed and delivered to open vats for fermentation.
Following a 4 day soak the Syrah is allowed to ferment with wild yeasts with plunging carried out twice daily. Following an extended time on skins (average 28 days in vat) the wines are gently pressed and taken straight to barrel for natural malolactic fermentation in the spring. The wines are racked once to a blend the following year before further maturing in tank for 3 months prior to bottling with a coarse filtration.
Man O' War is the name given to the bay you can see at the bottom of these vineyards, originally conferred by Captain James Cook, who 'upon sighting the ancient stands of magnificent kauri trees ashore, noted in his journals that they would make ideal masts for the Man O’ War warships of the Royal Navy', according to the winery's website.
Full & Opulent
Jancis Robinson Online - Richard Hemmingway MW - Wine of The Week January 3rd Jan 2020
"For me, great Syrah generally has several distinct qualities: powerful black fruit that is ripe but not jammy (the latter being more characteristic of Shiraz – an important distinction); fragrant black-pepper spiciness; plus meaty, leathery, smoky complexity that develops with maturity. There are many variations on these core themes (including herbal flavours from fermentation on stems, and varying degrees of oak influence) but when they are combined, Syrah is unique among grapes – and Dreadnought Syrah from Man O' War captures these characteristics with beautiful fidelity."