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High-Altitude Red From the Pyrenees

With this communication, we start a series of offers relating to single wines that we have tasted recently: wines that have shifted our perceptions and astounded our taste buds. The aim is defined by the term "Backfill & Diversify" i.e. it is an opportunity to pad out one's portfolio with less mainstream bits-and-pieces from the four corners of the wine world. First up, a Spanish beauty.

After many years with Torres, Raul Bobet embarked on several exciting projects including Castell d'Encus. Located in the foothills of the Pyrenées at almost 1,000m altitude, the estate has 23 hectares of vines planted with high density and farmed organically. Inspired by his discovery of medieval rock fermenters at Castell d'Encus, Raul restored them back into working condition and now ferments several wines in them. The results are amazing: high natural acidity, superb length and mouth feel with both reds and whites receiving a lot of critical praise.

You will know Syrah, whether as the Old World grape of that name or as the New World Shiraz. And you'll have almost certainly consumed noble northern Rhône-ers with their rich, herbal - even rooty - dark fruit, as well as those Barossa Valley monsters that feel as though they might be capable of alleviating the symptoms of a throat infection. 

But have you tried airy, elegant Syrah that pulls some pretty fancy, balletic dance moves on its way south across one's senses? If not, continue...

2015 Syrah Thalarn, Castell d'Encus
£165 in bond per 6  Drink 2019-25

N.B. Part of this wine was fermented in refurbished medieval vats carved from solid rock.

Scented, this dark wine, with lifted aromas of peppery-black fruits: just-picked blackcurrants and cherries, snappy-fresh. This is (as one would expect from the produce of a vineyard at 1,000 metres) a cool wine, elegant, showing a very mineral core. A long and subtle thing, almost bordering on Pinot levels of elegance. And there's a delightful  hint of chestnut to the dark fruit purity. This really is a very classy glass of wine and it offers fine grip at the back.

A thing of great loveliness...

Email Caspar to order - caspar[at]

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