Porseleinberg 2010

By , 15 November 2023



Concerning wine maturation, Jancis Robinson MW makes the penetrating observation that “Perhaps the top 10 per cent of all reds and five per cent of all whites (and those are generous estimates) will be more pleasurable and more interesting to drink when they are five years old than at one year old.”

This came to mind when I got to revisit the maiden 2010 vintage of Syrah from Swartland property Porseleinberg while visiting with winemaker Callie Louw yesterday. When I reviewed the wine on release in June 2012, I wrote “Dramatic but needs at least two years of bottle maturation to settle. Drink 2014 – 2020. Score: 17/20.”

I’m glad to report that it is still drinking fabulously well. The nose shows red berries, olive tapenade, cured meat, dried herbs, white pepper and other spice while the palate is medium bodied with lovely fruit expression, lemon-like acidty and powdery tannins. Those tannins were quite particular in their firmness 11 years ago but are performing a wonderful preservative function and this wine should last a good while longer. Highly desirable should it ever reach the secondary market.

CE’s rating: 97/100.

Check out our South African wine ratings database.


1 comment(s)

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    Greg Sherwood | 15 November 2023

    I am very pleased that we agree on the quality, longevity and complexity of the superb 2010 after your 97/100 and my 96/100 point score. In his recent Vinous.com SA Report, Neal Martin somehow seemed slightly less enthusiastic about this vintage, scoring it a meagre 93/100, despite the fact that both him and I tasted it again at the same vertical tasating in London. Looking back at my notes, where you (and I) view the tannin frame as an admirable structural asset, it seems Neal seemed to feel the wine was starting to dry out and become a bit grainy. Well, we all taste differently and interpret tannins and acids differently, and I certainly thought the 2010 was vibrantly fresh, still impressively powerful. What we all three did agree on was the wines wonderful Northern Rhone styling and general appeal. Still, I can’t help wondering if a wine of this stature derserves for have such divergent scores from 3 experienced critics? Answers on a postcard.

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