2018 Kusuda Syrah
Hiro Kusuda was born in Tokyo where he worked as a lawyer before a stint in Australia. Along the way his love affair with wine and winemaking grew, and eventually he set off to complete his studies at Geisenheim in Germany before moving to Martinborough in New Zealand to make hand crafted Pinot Noir. Kusuda is known for attention to detail, to the point that each berry is picked individually at harvest by his Japanese friends that fly out each year to assist. Naturally this precision comes at a cost, in particular the miniscule volumes produced, and as such stocks are extremely limited.
Full bottle 1,309 g. Not yet properly released. 22 months in barrel (25% new). 3,186 bottles produced.
Pale garnet. So black-peppery on the nose!! Light and sleek – really smooth and ethereal. I feel as though I should be comparing this to Jamet. Tannins almost imperceptible. Great, delicate balance between fruit and acidity. None of these Kusuda wines is obviously high in acidity (apart from the 2019 Riesling). I feel as though I could hoover this up now, even though it has not been fully launched. Long – and health juice again. Ethereal yet not light or wan. Drink 2021 - 2033.
Jancis Robinson MW