Jamsheed 'Illaj' Syrah, Yarra Valley, Australia 2015

Jamsheed Illaj Syrah.jpg
Jamsheed Illaj Syrah.jpg

Jamsheed 'Illaj' Syrah, Yarra Valley, Australia 2015

from 16.95

You're welcome. Well, we thought we'd skip to the end and work backwards.

We were invited to taste a few new wines from one of the UK's most respected importers, [name redacted for discretionary reasons]. As expected, the room was full of buyers from the top independent merchants and, as always, it was a fascinating game of bluff and double-bluff. When great wines are in short supply, you don't want to be the guy who takes a sip and fist-pumps the air shouting "Get in!". You swirl and take a sniff. Eyes will be on you. If you like it, you pout quizically (not an easy expression to pull off, but helpful to imagine you are President Trump and someone has just asked if you know the dialling code for Moscow), then you pour it away. If we really love something, we have a secret code, which involves [words redacted for discretionary reasons]. We will come back to it later, after we have thanked our hosts and gathered our belongings, affecting a parting sip as if it were an afterthought. When we tasted this wine and saw the price (I quietly double-checked with the importer that it wasn't a typo) it took all of our strength not to get our vuvuzelas out (I really hope you know what a vuvuzela is or that will sound like an act of gross public indecency). 

Gary Mills is a post-truth winemaker. That sounds proper clever doesn't it? It was intended to catch the eye of buzzword enthusiasts. With a bit of luck, somewhere in a gentrified part of East London someone will be reading this on their MacBook Pro and a falafel will have fallen from its organic flatbread wrap and rolled across The Guardian, coming to rest like an orphaned testicle next to an article about 'alternative facts'. 

What I mean is that Gary Mills is a winemaker who feels his way rather than relying on textbooks or, heaven forbid, facts. Don't roll your eyes! He's instinctive, using intuition not analysis and that's perfectly acceptable in winemaking in precisely the same way that it isn't in politics. The inspiration for this wine was conceived in the vineyard not the laboratory, with Gary taking 3 separate parcels from the Yarra Valley, which he thought would marry well together and blending them to create a wine that is significantly greater than the sum of its parts. 

It smells like blue ink infused with flowers and blackcurrant and sweet pudding spices like those you see in conical piles in the souk. Beneath those flattering aromas lies a body of fruit that has weight and proportion. Deep, significant flavour. A serious core of fruit with fine, 'grown-up' tannins and glossy acidity, but it's not a 'serious' wine at heart. There is hedonism in every sip and a mouthwatering succulence, like gorging on a punnet of blueberries, that cleanses the palate and keeps the fun flowing. 14% alc. Drink now-2025.

Customer Comments: 

"Off the scale good. Thank you." - Mr. G.P.

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