When it comes to Stellenbosch reds, 2007 and 2009 are highly regarded vintages on account of both being considerably cooler in the lead-up to harvest. Interestingly, however, the 2007 vintage of Plum Pudding Hill Syrah from Stellenzicht has an alcohol by volume of 15.19%, while the soon-to-be-released 2009 comes in significantly lower at 13.11% (no 2008 bottled).
What’s remarkable is how similar the two wines present. When the 2007 was reviewed last year in August, I referred to it as “big and burly” (see here) and the 2009 is not short of weight and power, either.
Matured for 30 months in all-new oak (87% French and 13% East European), the wine shows more black than red fruit, black pepper and exotic spice. It’s rich and full with quite tart acidity and nicely grippy tannins. There’s little to choose between the two wines but the fruit definition on the 2009 is probably a shade better by virtue of not having been picked quite so late and the wine is easier to drink due to the lower alcohol. Price: R180 a bottle.