Young winemaker, Sam Lambson, has a BSc Oenology degree from the University of Stellenbosch and started making wine while still studying – reportedly running between class and the cellar to check ferments. He also spent time working at the now defunct Hawke and Schoon Wine Shop where he developed a passion for Syrah, after which he took on harvests, helping Carl van der Merwe at De Morgenzon, then Lukas Van Loggerenberg and Chris Alheit.
Minimalist Wines is all about making quality wine with minimal intervention. It’s about focusing on the varietaIs that Sam Lambson is passionate about (chiefly cool climate Syrah), about treating them gently in the cellar and then allowing nature to shine. Working closely with farmers who share his passions for Syrah and precision viticulture, his idea is to provide a snap-shot of Cape Syrah in a given year and to fuse the results in a bottle. In other words, to connect the dots.
This blended Syrah first vintage hails from two vineyards in Elgin – the coolest viticultural region in South Africa – with soils derived from Table Mountain sandstone and Bokkeveld shale and a site on the Helderberg in Stellenbosch of granite origin. The vintage was 100% whole bunch fermented and was gently basket-pressed to older 300 litre French oak barrels for 10 months, then matured in bottle for a further 12 months before release.