Fun South African Syrah at a Fair Price

Today’s Story: Mullineux Wines

Mullineux Wines is a family owned and operated winery established in 2007 by husband and wife Chris and Andrea Mullineux. Situated in the Swartland wine region of South Africa, Mullineux sources fruit from trusted growers while growing some of their own vines in the Roundstone Farm property they own. Chris and Andrea are dedicated primary to Syrah, though they also grow and source Chenin Blanc, Grenache Blanc, Clairette, and Viognier. While all of these varieties grow quite well in the Swartland wine region, they also allude to both Chris’ and Andrea’s experiences working harvests in the Rhône Valley and other parts of France prior to establishing their namesake venture.

In the vineyards, Mullineux follows a minimally invasive philosophy which is aided by South Africa’s climate and weather being not very conducive to viruses and diseases. Their winemaking philosophy in the cellar is also centered in minimally invasive techniques, based largely in the desire to produce wines that express a true sense of place. Andrea does not add any yeasts, acids, enzymes, or other chemicals to the wines during fermentation and she practices gentle extraction given the structure naturally provided by the terroir. Following primary fermentation, the wines are pressed directly into French oak barrels of varying new percentages based on site and wine where they complete malolactic fermentation and aging. The wines are not racked unless necessary, and are bottled only when deemed ready without fining or filtration and minimal SO2 adds.

I previously reviewed their 2017 Old Vines White.

Today’s Wine: 2017 Syrah

100% Syrah; 14.5% ABV

The 2017 Syrah is medium purple in color with shades of deep ruby. Given some time to open up in the decanter, this wine blossoms with aromas of medium (+) intensity and a classic nose of plum, blackberry, blueberry, black cherry, violet, sweet tobacco, black pepper, a hint of smoke, and mild baking spice. Meanwhile the flavors are also of medium (+) intensity and the palate offers up notes of blackberry, blueberry, plum, black raspberry, cherry, licorice, violet, black pepper, and chocolate. This dry red is medium- to full-bodied with medium acidity, medium tannins, high alcohol, and a medium length finish. Good quality and a very solid bottle for the price.

Price: $35. This offers pretty decent value, as the wine has solid intensity and decent depth. It’s a little hot as the alcohol comes into better balance, and while the finish could be longer this is still a very solid bottle for its price-point.

If this wine seems like something you might enjoy, you may find this link helpful in locating it.

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