Wine of the week: a triumphant syrah

A triumphant incarnation of the syrah grape from one of South Africa’s superstar winemakers.

2020 Rall, AVA Syrah
(Image credit: )

2020 Rall, AVA Syrah, Swartland, South Africa


Every winemaking country in the world has its icon wines and superstar winemakers, and South Africa is no exception. Over the last couple of decades, Eben Sadie (Sadie Family Wines), Marc Kent (Boekenhoutskloof), Chris and Andrea Mullineux (Mullineux & Leeu Family Wines), among other luminaries, have captured the attention of the world’s keenest wine collectors with their scintillating creations.

Subscribe to MoneyWeek

Subscribe to MoneyWeek today and get your first six magazine issues absolutely FREE

Get 6 issues free

Sign up to Money Morning

Don't miss the latest investment and personal finances news, market analysis, plus money-saving tips with our free twice-daily newsletter

Don't miss the latest investment and personal finances news, market analysis, plus money-saving tips with our free twice-daily newsletter

Sign up

I first came across Donovan Rall’s wines over a decade ago when I tasted his inaugural 2008 vintage releases. It was clear that he was a force to be reckoned with. Over the last ten years, I have been shadowing his new releases, and the other day, he came to London to present his current portfolio and a few soon-to-be-released wines. Every single bottle was a work of uncompromising art. I would say he is the most exciting talent in the Cape today.

My chosen AVA Syrah is one of the most triumphant incarnations of the syrah grape I have tasted. While it will set you back a few quid, you can get in among his portfolio of stunning wines for as little as £20. The 2020 Rall Cinsault and 2020 Rall Grenache Blanc (both £21.68) and 2020 Rall White and 2019 Rall Red (both £25.68) are all soaringly delicious. Donovan manages to engender in his wines, whether white or red, a depth of minerality and integrity many winemakers can only dream of.

Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition’s Communicator of the Year (

Matthew Jukes

Matthew Jukes has worked in the UK wine business for well over three decades and during this time has written 14 wine books.  

Matthew regularly lectures, judges, speaks at wine conferences and runs masterclass tastings for both corporate and private clients all over the world. Matthew is also the creator of his ground-breaking initiative, the One Day Wine School, an indulgent day of tasting and learning first performed in 2006.

He has been the MoneyWeek wine correspondent since 2006 and has written a weekly column for the Daily Mail’s Weekend Magazine since 1999. His four highly-acclaimed, annual wine reports – the Burgundy En Primeur Report, the Bordeaux En Primeur Report, the Piemonte Report and the 100 Best Australian Wines – are published on his website,

Matthew is one of the world’s leading experts on Australian wine and, with Brisbane-based wine writer Tyson Stelzer, runs an annual competition in Australia to find ‘The Great Australian Red’.  He was made Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK at the 2012 Australia Day Foundation Gala dinner. 

Matthew is a winner of the International Wine and Spirit Competition's Communicator of the Year Trophy.  His thoughts, recommendations and tastings notes are followed very closely by the wine world at large.