2022 Giant Steps Tarraford Vineyard Syrah

Highly Rated
A beautifully poised, perfumed and precise Yarra Syrah only released in best years. Trophy winner.

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Sale price$90.00
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Description

Every four or five years or so, when the vintage allows it, Giant Steps produces a gorgeous, medium-bodied Syrah from their iconic Tarraford Vineyard in the Yarra Valley. Awarded a Gold Medal and the Trophy for Best Shiraz at the 2023 Yarra Valley Wine Show, the 2022 release is an absolute knockout!

Tarraford Vineyard, situated in the central Tarrawarra area of the Yarra and with these vines happily residing on its northern slopes, creates an elegant style of Syrah that looks much more like something from the Northern Rhone than from most of Australia. 

2022 was a challenging season in the Yarra, but despite a cool, wet spring and low yields, the dry, warm summer allowed for slow ripening, resulting in concentrated flavours but still with the region's typical vibrant acidity. This wine blends two ferments from Block 4. Seventy per cent whole bunch fermentation in French oak puncheons (25% new) gives structure and depth, while the remaining 30% destemmed fruit, aged in large foudre, adds finesse and brightness. The components were then blended and matured in seasoned foudre for integration.

Aromatically it's extremely floral and spicy, while the palate is medium-to-full-bodied with layers of blackberry, plum, and spice, balanced by fresh acidity. It's just a beautifully poised and delicious, modern Yarra Syrah, and great from the get-go or in the cellar for up to a decade.

97 points
"A medium, bright, crimson purple. The first Tarraford syrah since '18, this promptly won the Trophy for Best Syrah at last year's Yarra Valley Wine Show. Aromas of dark cherries, blueberries and graphite, with the viognier adding some exotic allspice and incense notes. Concentrated, tightly focused and beautifully balanced. Impressively long on the floral-infused finish. Super wine."
- Philip Rich (Halliday Wine Companion)
96 points, Gold Medal + Trophy (Best Shiraz)
- 2023 Yarra Valley Wine Show

Vintage Notes

The 2022 season was high quality, but low yielding in the Yarra Valley. A very cool, wet and stormy spring resulted in some challenging conditions around flowering and hence very poor fruit set. The season proceeded to dry out into December, with a dry and warm Christmas period. This exacerbated the already small bunch weights, leading to bunches that weighed up to 40% lower than average. The mild temperatures meant long, slow ripening and flavour concentration throughout summer, with some well-placed rain in January refreshing the vineyards at just the right time. The strong canopies and low fruit load meant we sailed neatly into picking with very little disease or weather pressure affecting our picking decisions. The grapes from 2022 came off the vine with lovely concentration and flavour with great natural acidity and tannin.

Vineyard Notes

Location: Tarrawarra Planted: 1988 Elevation: 100 meters Soil Type: Grey clay loam Aspect: North, South and East facing slopes Size: 8.5 hectares Located in a protected valley, Tarraford Vineyard has a discreet microclimate, that is cooler than neighbouring sites. A diversity of aspect and clone provides multifaceted winemaking opportunities.

Winemaking

The final Tarraford Syrah blend is comprised of two separate ferments from Block 4. The Whole Bunch portions (70% of the blend) were fermented for 14 days before being pressed and completing malolactic fermentation in French oak puncheons (25% New). The Destemmed portions (30% of the blend) went through a longer cooler fermentation before being pressed and matured in foudre (2000L) for 10 months. The wine was then blended and returned to the seasoned foudre for an additional 5 months to integrate before bottling by gravity.

Peak Drinking / Cellaring Potential

2 - 10 YEARS

97 points - "A single-block shiraz; 60% whole cluster co-fermented with 2% viognier and matured mainly in puncheons together with one large foudre. A medium, bright, crimson purple. The first Tarraford syrah since '18, this promptly won the Trophy for Best Syrah at last year's Yarra Valley Wine Show. Aromas of dark cherries, blueberries and graphite, with the viognier adding some exotic allspice and incense notes. Concentrated, tightly focused and beautifully balanced. Impressively long on the floral-infused finish. Super wine." - Philip Rich (Halliday Wine Companion)

96 points, Gold Medal + Trophy (Best Shiraz) - 2023 Yarra Valley Wine Show

Giant Steps

Giant Steps is a premium Yarra Valley outfit founded by Phil Sexton and located in the township of Healesville. Beginning with the vision of original head winemaker Steve Flamsteed, Giant Steps developed an international reputation for producing some of Australia's finest examples of single vineyard Pinot Noir & Chardonnay.

In 2021 the exceptionally talented Melanie Chester joined the team as the new head of winemaking and viticulture, marking an exciting new chapter in this elite producer's story.

Every aspect of the Giant Steps process is geared towards making truly world-class wines from the vineyard to the final bottled wine. The focus is on what the Yarra does best - Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Shiraz/Syrah and Bordeaux-variety blends - and showcasing the unique terroirs of some of the region's finest vineyards.

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