Blend: 51% Syrah 49% Cabernet Sauvignon
Alcohol: 14.5 % | PH: 3.79 | Titratable acidity: 5.97 g/L
Bottling Date: August 2020
Cellaring: 5+ years
A deep purple-tinged colour with an intense and ripe nose of blackberry and cassis complimented by a complex mix of shortbread, paprika, black pepper and some bacon and game meat notes with hints of leather, dried thyme and potpourri. The palate is dry, full-bodied and rich, packed with dark berry and dried berry fruit with firm tannic structure, crisp acidity and a long finish showing toast, lavender, graphite and dried rosemary. Drinkable now and will also age well. Pair with slow roasted lamb shoulder or lentil, mushroom and paprika ragout.
Rhys Pender, Master of Wine
2018 was a moderate growing season that started with an earlier budbreak and a warmer than average May. The season cooled during the summer months and rebounded with favourable September and October temperatures. The cooperative weather allowed us to retain acidity and provide quality fruit with increased crop levels. While the sun and heat create intense fruit flavours, the cool evenings preserve the natural acidity in the grapes keeping the wine fresh and lively.
Our Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes were harvested by hand from Burrowing Owl Vineyard on the Black Sage Bench in late October. They were de-stemmed and gently crushed before being fed by gravity flow into the same tank where they were allowed to cold soak for slow, soft extraction of flavor and colour. The co-fermentation process helps to marry the flavours and creates a unique harmony to the blend. After completion, the wine was transferred into barrels to allow for malolactic fermentation to occur. Afterwards, it was aged for 18 months in a selection of barrels that helped integrate the components and soften the tannins while adding complex savoury notes. The 2018 Athene was bottled unfiltered and allowed to age further in bottle before its release.