16/03/2020 – Two wines from Brazil

(2020) Launching for the first time in the UK, and a young, multi award-winning winery, this is a seriously exciting find. It comes from the highlands of São Paulo state, just north of the Tropic of Capricorn, where it is too hot and wet to harvest in the usual month of March, so an extra pruning delays the onset of fruit so harvest takes place in August's cooler and drier conditions. All Syrah, aged nine months in French oak, the vineyards sit at 900-1200 metres altitude on granite soils. The colour is deep crimson, and the nose offers a creamy weight of black fruit, silky cocoa and a little touch of violet lift. In the mouth the supple, smooth creaminess of the fruit and tannins is beguiling, but this is medium-bodied and elegant rather than a blockbuster, a note of leaf tea and thyme adding to the sophistication into the long, lightly-spiced finish.
(2020) Arguably my favourite wine of this selection, only 2,000 bottles were produced of this rare Brazilian Semillon, aged in barrels made with oak staves but acacia wood heads, which does seem to add a little extra fragrance to the wine. Toasty notes prevail, along with lemon meringue pie notes of citrus and pastry, and something cool and herby, reminiscent of camomile tea. With 12% alcohol it puts me in mind of a young Hunter Valley Semillon, the palate showing bags of juicy citrus fruit and acidity, but something sweeter and more peachy just touching the mid palate. Finishing with plenty of creamy, almondy weight, it is a delightful wine.

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