What’s striking about the Shiraz 2013 from Alto in Stellenbosch is just how South African it is; not Rhône or Swartland aping Rhône but South African on account of a certain burliness about it.
Matured for 18 months in 60% American and 40% French oak, ranging from first- to third-fill barrels, the nose shows red and black fruit, pepper and spice plus a little tarry character. It’s big and rich (alcohol is 14.61%) with plenty of sweet, ripe fruit and firm tannins and to anybody who grew up on local wines, it will taste reassuringly familiar. Price: R185 a bottle.
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