Alto Shiraz 2007

Colour: Ruby red.
Bouquet: Blackcurrant and prunes with smoky, spicy undertones laced with berry and fruit.
Taste: A full-bodied wine with delicate spices followed by prunes and plums and a creamy mouthfeel with a good tannic backbone.

The winemaker suggests enjoying it on its own or with Mediterranean dishes such as spicy lamb and meat casseroles. It is also a good partner to roasts, oxtail and even the traditional South African barbeque.

variety : Shiraz | 100% Shiraz
winery : Alto Estate
winemaker : Schalk van der Westhuizen
wine of origin : Stellenbosch
analysis : alc : 15.39 % vol  rs : 4.1 g/l  pH : 3.53  ta : 5.28 g/l  
type : Red  style : Dry  body : Full   wooded
pack : Bottle  closure : Cork  

in the vineyard : Background
Alto, situated on the slopes of the Helderberg Mountain in the Stellenbosch district, dates back to 1693 when it was part of a much larger farm called Groenrivier (Green River), granted to a free burgher by Governor Simon van der Stel. In 1919 the owner of the farm, Hennie Malan, sold off half the land to his brother-in-law and set about planting vines on his remaining portion, focusing exclusively on red varieties. He named the smaller farm Alto, a reference to its altitude (some slopes rise as high as 500m above sea level) and his striving for excellence.

Alto has 93 hectares under vines. The trellised vineyards cling to the high granite slopes that are ideal for the cultivation of red wine varieties.

Vineyard Location
The wine is made from vineyards planted in deep, red, decomposed granite and clay soils on a north-westerly slope, situated 200m to 400m above sea level. The ten year-old vines are grown under dryland conditions and are trellised on a five-wire hedge system. They yielded to 5 to 6 tons per hectare.
Viticulturist: Eben Archer

about the harvest: The grapes were harvested by hand at the end of March at between 26° to 27° Balling.

in the cellar : After destalking and crushing the grapes, the juice was fermented for seven days on the skins in stainless-steel tanks at 25° to 27°C. After malolactic fermentation, the wine was aged in wood for 18 months, using a combination of French (40%) and American (60%) first, second and third-fill barrels.

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