There is a fact not known to many is that Syrah (pronounced sir-rah) is the same grape variety as Shiraz (pronounced shi-raz). It is true that Syrah originated in the Rhone Valley of France, but when this plump & juicy grape made its way to Australian shores, the Aussie winemakers & vintners coined a new term for this variety – Shiraz.
Let us try to end all your confusions once & for all. The first & foremost point to remember is that both Syrah and Shiraz wines are derived from the genetically same grape variety. So no matter what you call it, rest assured that your wine has been crafted using the same bold & intense grape. Wines crafted utilizing this grape are tannin-filled & full-weighted, leaving a healthy & lasting taste in the mouth. Great for pairing with any cuisine, these wines contain the highest level of healthy antioxidants owing to the increased amount of tannins.
Both Shiraz & Syrah wines are vivid, full-bodied, and brimming with vibrant characters, flavours & tannins. These wines are some of the darkest reds in the world, so much so that if you were to hold a glass full of Syrah in front of the light, it would be difficult to see through the dense, purple-red hued liquid. A lot of variables also depend upon the region/terroir where the grape has been cultivated, but usually, these wines exhibit the features mentioned above.
To understand the difference between these two varietals clearly, you need to get a taste of the fruity & elegant palates these wines have to offer –
Syrah: This style is leaner & softer to the Aussie approach, yet more complicated owing to the spice, cherry, smoke, plum & tar nuances it presents. These contain more delicate & velvety tannins and are fit for a short to long-term cellaring period. Syrah is earthy, lively & acidic.
Shiraz: Shiraz varietals are full-bodied & vibrant, much more pronounced as compared to the leaner styles of Syrah produced around the world. The fruit-driven palates of these powerful wines consist of cherry, blackberry & black spice elements. Owing to the higher content of alcohol, these wines can be aged in the cellar for years to come.