2016 Hartenberg 'Gravel Hill'

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2016 Hartenberg 'Gravel Hill'
2016 Hartenberg 'Gravel Hill'
2016 Hartenberg 'Gravel Hill'
2016 Hartenberg 'Gravel Hill'
2016 Hartenberg 'Gravel Hill'
2016 Hartenberg 'Gravel Hill'
2016 Hartenberg 'Gravel Hill'
2016 Hartenberg 'Gravel Hill'

"Home of the Worlds Best Shiraz"

This wine is certainly about a sense of place. The Gravel Hill terroir consistently provides a Shiraz that is unique in character, quality and expression. An iron fist in a velvet glove, Hartenberg's flagship red, previously only available at the Cape Winemakers Guild Auction.

Tasting Notes 

Colour

A dark centered, black-red and ruby rim.

Nose

Outspoken black fruit, violets, cloves, smokiness and black pepper on the bouquet. 

Palate 

An elegant palate of sweet ripe fruit, spicy oak, and rich tannins ends with a lingering, savoury finish. A superb expression of winemaker Carl Schulz's towering abilities.

 The Estate

On the slopes of Bottelary Hills bordering Stellenbosch, is a family estate where nature provides the perfect backdrop to grow, produce and share award-winning wines. Summer at Hartenberg brings picnics on the lawns followed by buoyant games of boule. Winter invites you to intimate fireside lunches and sumptuous reds, smoky charcuterie and olives, and sensorial cellar tours. Our Wetland Conservation Area, alongside the vineyards, makes for a beautiful setting for walks and shared family fun.

We are passionate about preserving our natural wealth as evidenced by our sustainable farming practices and conservation programs. We are proud members of Biodiversity and Wine (BWI) and Integrated Production of Wine (IPW), and the estate is home to plentiful wildlife and over 120 species of birds – inspiring us to combine the best of nature with fine wine. Our stated intention is for a pristine environment where nature thrives.

History

Over the past thirty years, from a poor parcel of dry, gravelly soil, a veritable giant in the wine world has grown. Hartenberg was one of the first South African estates to separately vinify grapes from a particular terroir. Wine from the small and highly unusual “gravel hill” was first bottled in 1978 under the “Montagne” label. Winemaker Carl Schultz arrived at the farm in 1993 and soon agreed that “The Gravel Hill” site was special, with wine from its grapes different to that from other parts of Hartenberg. The opportunity to showcase the site on its own arose after Carl was invited to join the Cape Winemakers Guild (CWG) a couple of years later. As a condition of membership, he had to produce a small quantity of wine for sale at the annual CWG Auction. Consequently, the 1995 vintage from the site was named and bottled for the first time as The Gravel Hill Shiraz. It was sold at the 1997 auction – the first of fourteen vintages to be sold at the CWG auction. Before becoming commercially available, accolades for the  Gravel Hill already include the wine earning the highest price for any Shiraz at the 2007 CWG Auction and the second highest price for any wine at the auction ever. It is also the wine that has been auctioned at the CWG longest.

The core of the now phenomenal reputation of The Gravel Hill Shiraz is locked into the site's unique geology. On the surface, there appears to be very little soil. Instead a 40 cm thick covering of brown ferrous stone is undermined by a fine clay layer, stretching down a few metres.

As the winter rains dissipate and the soil dries out, the subsoil clay cracks, and water filters through the gravel and collects in the clay fissures, serving as the vines’ water reservoir. As the summer heat  wanes and the winter rain arrives, the clay swells, pruning the roots buried inside it,  thereby limiting the vigour of the vines.

Accolades

  • 2016 vintage 95 points Tim Atkin MW
  • 2015  96 points Tim Atkin
  • 2014  95 points Tim Atkin, 4½ stars Platter's SA Wine Guide
  • 2013  Gold Medal Syrah Du Monde France (2017), 5 stars Platter's SA Wine Guide
  • 2012  Gold Medal Decanter 2017, 91 points Robert Parker, 4½ stars Platter's SA Wine Guide
  • 2011  94 points Tim Atkin, 4½ stars Platter's SA Wine Guide
  • 2010  94 points Tim Atkin, 94 points Robert Parker, 4½ stars Platter's SA Wine Guide
  • 2008   Gold Medal Syrah Du Monde 2013, 4½ stars Platter's SA Wine Guide, 94 points Tim Atkin MW

Specifications

Year 2016
Bottle Size 750ml
Cultivar Shiraz
Country South Africa
Alcohol content
14.58% alc vol 
Units of Alcohol per Bottle 10.9 units
Barrel Aging 18 months in 50% new French Oak barrels, 50% in 2nd fill (225li)
Type Red Wine
Cellaring Potential 20 years plus
Features Vegetarian & Vegan approved
Allergen Information Contains sulphites
Food Matches
Fillet of kudu with a red wine jus, rare roast sirloin, wild mushroom risotto.
Origin WO Western Cape
Appellation Stellenbosch