One of the most enchanting features of Oldenburg Vineyards, is Rondekop. A little hill with ferricrete soils that sits in the middle of the vineyards, surrounded by the most Alpine of mountains to the east and the iconic Simonsberg looming benignly on the west. Rondekop has its own series of wines made from its slopes. The Oldenburg Rondekop Series Stone Axe Syrah 2017 is one of them. Early Stone Age Axes have been found on Rondekop and are estimated to be some 100,000 years old. Adding to the mystique of the valley is the thought that so many years ago, humans walked the Banghoek Valley.
The grapes for the Oldenburg Rondekop Series Stone Axe Syrah 2017 come from Syrah blocks planted on Rondekop. Climatically the weather resulted in lighter bunches with smaller berries of excellent quality. During hand harvesting the first sorting takes place to ensure that only the best grapes go through for the winemaking process. Destalking an crushed took place and the wine went through the fermentation process. This was followed by 20 months in 300 litre French oak barrels, of which half were new and the remainder second fill. The wine was then prepared for bottling.
From a Burgundy shaped bottle closed with natural cork. The label is an elegant drawing of Rondekop. In the glass, a rich bloodplum at the heart which pales out to a youthful purple red at the edges. The aromas are rich and full and berried. There is a hint of lemongrass there too as the wine enters and fills the palate with its generosity. Sappy full of fruit and gentle tannins. Big wine with a long way to go. Very impressive glass.
The Oldenburg Rondekop Series Stone Axe Syrah 2017 is very much a food wine. Serve lightly chilled, about 30 minutes in the fridge or an ice bucket. It is a wine for fully flavoured foods. For vegetarians, Melanzane Parmiggiana would be the obvious choice maybe with the addition of some exotic mushrooms. Local dishes like Tomato Bredie or a good piece of Boerewors off the braai are great partners. Alida Ryder’s Cheese and Tomato Baked Ravioli is the perfect midweek supper dish after a long day, and you want a great bottle of wine with a well prepared meal. Click HERE for her recipe and to have a browse around her wonderful website.
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