The 2016 vintage comes on the back of one of our driest seasons recorded in the last century and in the cellar it came down to incredible stress and the management thereof; and the ability to move at fast to supersonic speed at times to get the fruit picked at the last moment, without getting to over-ripeness. At the time of harvest we were not all too positive about the vintage, but it turned out 200% above expectations and the result is humbly and gratefully accepted.
The 2015 Columella is in many ways the coming together of an array of elements and a strong expression of our quest to produce a wine that will be as true to the region as possible, rather than one that expresses personal preferences. This wine is a bit more inverted and austere and deeply earthed; and it speaks more of this place. The wine is “grounded” and it is only after a while in the glass that the perfume flavours with an underlying dark graphite edge start to take over the initial, very earthy flavours. The tannins of the wine are tightly coiled up and the wine honestly just needs time and patience. Columella 2015 has a very good overall equilibrium and good acidity.
From the 2010 harvest onwards the Columella wines need more time in their youth, or else decantation for at least 2 hours if opened prior to 5 years of age.’
Like last year the Columella is a blend of mainly Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre with the remainder Cinsaut, Tinta Barocca and Carignan. On the day the wine was charming, Eben remarking that it was the most accessible that the 2015 was so far. Florals, some darker fruit followed to a palate brimming with confidence and composure. The power and deeper fruit of the 2015 vintage evident on both the nose and structured yet polished palate. A remarkable wine that will give earlier pleasure than 2013 and 2014, but it is a classic destined to be long lived and will evolve slowly over the next decades. This is a collectable.’ – James Pietersen (July 2017)