There is a long time since I first wanted to taste a wine from the newly developed Limari Valley of Chile. Not a lot of winery are growing vines over there, a desert region with very high temperature during the day and very low at night. If you want to know more about Limari Valley, check HERE.
Only about 112 ha of Syrah are planted. Which makes it extremely small, according to any standards. To get an idea, imagine that Concha Y Toro, the biggest of the Chilean producer, owns around 8.500 ha of vines in Chile. The very specificity of this valley, aside from being one of the northernmost Chilean vineyard is the amount of rainfalls, an average of 100 mm a year: far from the minimum of 700 mm required by the vine. The vineyard is thus highly dependable on the irrigation system, a technique that Chilean producers master thanks to the unlimited water supply coming from the Andes.
What about this wine, the Reserva Especial Syrah 2008? Well obviouly, it is a Syrah from a warm climate. The wine is extremely concentrated and very powerful. Very ripe fruit with blackberry and dark cherries. One can also pick a little bit of the Syrah typical peppery smell but the use of oak is also very disturbing. The mouth feel is very heavy. Much less interesting than the nose. You can taste a clear lack of acidity and a strong alcohol. There is also a hint of under ripeness, typical from the vintage and a Syrah grown in a too warm climate. Also one have to say that the oak aging is overwhelming, vanilla, chocolate and coco flavour overpowers the rest. However, the overall impression is still good, powerful for sure but not unpleasant. It is definitely a bottle to let age one or two years to get the best of it, mainly because of the oak aging. Much better than most Australian Shiraz.
Wineops’ opinion : 73/100 ; 5 +
Link to Alko’s page about this wine: HERE, widely available in Finland!