Living and working in the south of the country, I can’t see Hawke’s Bay wines as much as those in the centre, so it was a real pleasure to be looking forward to sampling a range of Syrahs. I was rounding up a line-up to sample but then, just to turn things around, a Syrah from Marlborough arrived and then another from Central Otago to join the mix. Rare beasts indeed given Hawke’s Bay’s dominance with this variety.
Covering the price range, it was a fascinating mix.
2019 Mt Difficulty Ghost Town Bendigo Syrah
Price RRPs $60 Assessment From Excellent to Exceptional
Attractively floral, violet, fleshy salty notes, cured meats, spices, a leather thread. Powerfully fruity, darker fruits, spices and salty notes again matched by wrinkle your mouth tannins. The tannins settle like wine pops up, great length and depth of taste, blood and iron filings al close. Complexity, interest, good catch.
2019 Elephant Hill Stone Hawke’s Bay Syrah
Price RRP$59 Assessment From very good to excellent
A charming touch of funky leads, some sweet hints of oak, tasty qualities, pencil shavings. Sweetly fruity, red fruits and berries, a even a pinch of toffee before the tannins hurry in showing real grip and chewability which leads this to a drier finish with black tea notes. That funky it gets most obviously finished time, blurring the other flavours.
2020 Trinity Hill Thomson’s Block Single Vineyard Hawke’s Bay Syrah
Price RRP$120 Assessment Exceptional
Fragrant florality ebbs to the forest floor meaty first notes tasty qualities come into play, a little also dried grass. A powerful example, great intensity of flavour with a refreshing note of leaf/mint with a tasty background. Fine, sweet tannins balance, constancy and length and inside its power is there a sense of elegance. Gorgeous texture.
2020 Trinity Hill Gimblett Gravels Syrah
Price MSRP $39.99 Assessment Excellent
A perfume to this, a herbal melange and flowers, leaven umami notes, an earthy quality below, fruit inside support. a closer, cooler feeling, shows his youthful side. Mixed berries, processed earth, a deceitful powerful tannic the spine gives real chewiness. More to come I feel so give it some air or pair it with food show his best.
2019 Elephant Hill Airavata Hawke’s Bay Syrah
Price RRP$125 Assessment Excellent
Scented nose with bursts of heat leather and balsamic, powdery stones, salty notes that rise, darker fruit. Wealth of fruit leads, a touch of funky wild, bloody, tasty note again with a spicy refreshing quality. It affects some different buttons, still, with a young man angularity that begs some more time to come together.
2021 Trinity Hill Hawke’s Bay Syrah
Price MSRP $24.99 Assessment From Excellent to Exceptional
Darker, brooding, lead/graphite pencil e shavings, florality, spice, hanging game with ventilation. A again menacing palate, pencil lead, dark fruits, tasty qualities, deceptively chewy the tannins frame the length close. Brilliant acidity gives this freshness and liveliness with spots of leather on the closure. Some juveniles cheek and promise, yet he already drinks well. Value here.
2020 Esk Valley Artisan Series Hawke’s Bay Syrah
Price MSRP $24.99 Assessment From very good to excellent
Notes by Charry, a touch of wild, dusty, processed gravel earth/humus, salty notes. Medium weight style, a mix of red and dark fruits, fleshy, the charry clear enough notes. It opens on palate with aeration, plump well with a fresh, mint touch. Ready to go now, it’s just failing was part of a very solid array.
2021 Giesen Single Vineyard Selection Clayvin Marlborough Syrah
Price MSRP $29 Assessment From Excellent to Exceptional
A seductive perfume, purple and lavender, ham, darker fruit. Creamy structured anterior palate. flows to sweeter fruits tempered by the salty quality and little funk before powerful, the chewy tannins arrive into play by lending a dry, lip-smacking quality a the end. Light acidity, graceful inside his youthful audacity, great length and growing all the time.