2015 Bekkers McLaren Vale Syrah
This wine has instant impact: rich damson in colour, with intense black spice, it balances the punch and intensity of an Australian Shiraz with the elegance of the same grape from the Northern Rhone. It seems to elongate in your mouth, with silky tannins and dark fruits backed up by chocolate notes and crunchy redcurrants. Delicious, it deepens after 15 minutes of opening, a brilliant example of why Toby Bekkers is such a sought-after consultant for organic and biodynamic farming. This is not certified, ‘and nor do I want to be,’ he says. He leaves 15% whole-bunches in the vinification, with the rest destemmed but not crushed, with natural yeasts and extremely gentle extraction, all aged in French oak barrels (40% new) and given minimal sulphur bottling. I had this with Chinese duck pancakes and it was a great match.