Strandveld Syrah 2020


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Additional information


South Africa


Cape Agulhas, Elim


94% Syrah; 6% Viognier




17/20 Points Jancis Robinson MW; 90 Points Tim Atkin MW, 93 Points Wine Mag Shiraz Report S Africa, Double Gold Michelangelo Awards S Africa 2021, Double Gold Veritas Awards S Africa 2021

Good to know

Organic practices, Vegan

Tasting Notes

Strandveld Syrah has recently arrived in the cellar! A classy northern Rhône-style red from this excellent winery in South Africa. It has intense and appealing blackfruit, cherry and damson aromas with hints of spice and pepper, which lead into a complex, refined blackfruit palate with beautiful balance of fruit, structure and tannins. A savoury, medium-bodied red with great depth of flavour. Strandveld’s vineyards are just 9 kilometres from the sea, where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Indian Ocean off Cape Agulhas; this is cool climate South Africa and this climate is instrumental in producing more restrained red wines than the warmer areas of the Cape.

We are pleased to have obtained a small parcel of Strandveld Syrah at a great price; good to snap up this award-winning bargain  love both Jancis Robinson’s and Tim Atkin’s descriptions of this wine.

How the wine is made

A blend of mainly Syrah, with just 6% Viognier grapes from 16 year-old vines, which were harvested in early to mid February 2020, with a total of 10 days skin contact and a daily pump over. It was matured for 20 months in French Oak in a combination of 300 and 500 litre barrels, 35% new oak, the balance being made up of second and third fill barrels.

About the Region

At almost 35 degrees below the equator, the maritime climate has below average temperatures for the Cape. Here, the winds can be so strong that vineyard workers find it hard to stand up! “Strandveld” refers to the coastal belt of land which spans the coastline around Africa’s tempestuous southernmost tip at Cape Agulhas. It is characterised by severe wind, mist and cool temperatures. This confluence of maritime climate, varying site and soil types create the diversity of terroir that distinguishes the wines of Strandveld Vineyards.

About the vintage

The growing season for the 2020 harvest started with a normal cold winter in 2019, this was followed by a very dry spring and less wind than usual. Conditions were looking good until they were hit by a cold front in late October 2019. This Artic blast brought with it a hailstorm with stones the size of Shiraz berries driven by a gale force South West wind which ripped the leaves and shoots of the vines. Within 10 minutes the damage was done; the potential crop reduced by half.

In the middle of January 2020, a Black South Easter (as they call them) tormented them for 10 days, accompanied by 115 mm of rain, which caused berry burst on early cultivars like Sauvignon Blanc. However, the Syrah grapes were only in the early stage of veraison and were not badly affected. By harvest time from mid February to mid March the ripened grapes of this reduced crop were healthy, and the wine-maker could breath a sigh of relief! They certainly get weather here!

About the producer

Conrad Vlok, winemaker at Strandveld since 2004, focuses  on producing excellent quality grapes in this cool climate. Yields are low, the grapes ripen slowly and the berries are small; as a result the wines have intense flavours. The 69 hectares estate and winery was established in 2001, the vines that have produced this wine were planted from 2004 and already the winery has achieved many awards. The 2020 vintage of this wine received a Double Gold award from Michelangelo and Veritas 2021 Awards (South Africa) and scored 17/20 from Jancis Robinson MW and 90 Points from Tim Atkin MW.


“Definitely Northern Rhone style and quite ambitious…fun to drink! Satin texture”  17/20 points. Drink 2023 – 2027.  Jancis Robinson MW 2023

“Conrad Vlok blends 6% Viognier into this cool climate Syrah to give ti more perfume and complexity. Green, herbal, smoky, meaty. Its a wine that flirts with austerity and stony reduction but has masses of intensity, focus and personality.”  90 points. Drink 2023 – 2027. Tim Atkin MW Special Report South Africa 2023

Strandveld’s logo is “where earth and ocean meet – there lies the magic.” and you can read about this unique place in our short blog, by following the link which will take you to our Learn & Discover – Behind the Labels pages.

Food match: Roasts and Grills – especially lamb and steak; game; pork; mediterranean style foods

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