Gimblett Gravels Vineyard’s stony soils keep the growth and cropping of the old clone Syrah vines in check and provide warmth in the autumn, both critical factors in developing the enormous character and presence of the wine. The grapes were hand harvested and destemmed before undergoing fermentation in open-top oak vessels and stainless steel tanks. The wine spent 18 months maturing in 35% new French oak barrels.

92 Points
2011 vintage
96 Points
2011 vintage
Harvest Note
Growing season was slightly soggy, with warm temperatures and more humidity than normal, but extra work in the vineyards helped save the vintage. The North Island, including Hawkes Bay, received plenty of rain and humidity, so vineyard work focused on proper spacing of bunches and managing vegetation. Yields were average at harvest. Thus far, the 2011s are clean and intense; earlier picking resulted in lower alcohol. The short growing season has created intensely flavoured Syrahs that are distinctly peppery, pure fruited and with lovely fine tannin. Not overly concentrated or powerful, the 2011 wines show great precision, minerality and tension: an overall “European” complexity.
Tasting Note
This deeply dark purple hued wine has aromas of sweet blackberries with subtle hints of bark, cocoa and freshly cracked black pepper. On the palate, an elegant core of black fruits is layered with dusty, dry tannin and refreshing acidity.
Food Pairing
This wine pairs best with wild game dishes.
Technical Data
GRAPES: 100% Syrah
PH: 3.68
ACIDITY: 5.50 g/L
ABV: 13.0%
AGING: 18 months in French oak barrels, 35% new.
Unique Selling Points
  • Like southern Rhône vineyards, Gimblett Gravels is covered by stones that absorb the day's heat to radiate it at night, promoting exceptional ripeness.
  • Shows alluring, Rhône-style aromas and flavors of blue and black fruits, exotic spices and black pepper.
  • Red wines from the Gimblett Gravels vineyard have a rich, ripe and elegant style, and fine tannins.
  • Le Sol is Wine Advocate’s highest scoring New Zealand wine and its only New Zealand wine to be rated over 95 points.

About the Grape

Syrah has seductively dense, rich, chewy black berry aromas and flavors, with notes of tar, wood smoke, bacon, leather, chocolate, and sometimes violets. The tannins are firm yet elegant.
On-Line Assistant
Ask the Expert
We look forward to hearing from you! Please choose a subject from the options below and let us know your name and email address before adding your message.