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Luke Lambert Syrah 2018

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It's fair to say Luke Lambert hasn't looked back since 'relocating' his Syrah to the Tibooburra vineyard. This southwest sloping site lies in the south-eastern corner of the Valley, near Gembrook, and might be the coolest microclimate of the Yarra. The site is expertly managed by Greg Kerr, the grower who planted the vineyard in 2001. The soils here are considered very unusual for the Yarra, comprising a seam of black volcanic topsoil over yellow clay with a smattering of granite rock throughout. Furthermore, the quality of the clonal material in Tibooburra supplies Lambert with a deeper, darker and more structured Syrah than we typically see in the Yarra. This is what drew Lambert to the site and a good chunk of the reason that this Syrah has become a touchstone example of the cool-climate Australian red genre. Put this up against the most famous Aussie cool climate reds and it’s clear that something pretty special is going on chez Lambert. The handling was pretty similar to previous vintages, wild ferment—taking in 80% wholes bunches—ageing in neutral oak (a ten year old, 5,000-litre). The wine was left unsulphured until just prior to bottling, without fining or filtration. Lambert describes his 2018 as,

“A warmer, dryer year with more fruit power”, adding that, “because of the elevation of the Tibooburra vineyard and the aspect (Chardonnay facing East, Syrah facing South) the wines hold their acid structure and elegance and sail through the hotter years.” We’re a 96 on that. 
“Many people know I don’t go a bunch on Shiraz, or more precisely, I have quite specific needs. Luke Lambert is the Jim Clark of winemakers. Neon purple, perfume, pepper, boysenberry, blackcurrant, honey biscuits. It’s light to medium-bodied, intense small berried black fruit, plenty of bunch and spice, highlight is ultra-pure mineral water acidity, fine chalky tannin, and a long crisp peppery finish. Wonderful delineation and expression of Shiraz. Often not for everyone, but works for me. And so often you are defined by what you don’t do.” 96 points, Gary Walsh,

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Additional Information

Volume (ml)750ml
Winemaking PracticesMostly Conventional Techniques
Vineyard PracticesMostly Regular Farming Techniques
Product typeWine Red Shiraz
Sub-RegionYarra Valley

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