South Africa continues to offer great value for your wine dollar. Palest straw in colour with a hint of lime, it shows a nose of apple and lemon with oak spice and that Burgundian barnyard note. Medium-bodied with the flavour of ripe yellow apple and grilled nuts enhanced with toasty oak.
Made from old bush vines, which produce naturally low yields. This is a juicy Chenin which flaunts honey, melon, yellow apple, lemon and white flowers. Great length and a wine that calls out for shrimp or scallops.
You won’t find any better value in a white wine than this Chenin Blanc. You get a wine that’s bright straw in colour with a bouquet of apple and lemon along with a light forest floor note from the oak fermentation. Medium-bodied and dry, flavours of apple, pear and melon fill the palate ending on a lemony note with a suggestion of oak spice. A very complex wine for the price.
This carries all of Semillon's waxy heft and sheen, but with a stony, citrus-lined, edgy profile that talks of its place. This is from Henk Laing's Trekpoort farm on Skurfberg Mountain, within the Citrusdal Mountains (WO Citrusdalberg). These are now 50+ year-old bush vines, almost 1 m tall, planted on red sand and clay in between rooibos, fynbos and apricot trees. After whole bunch pressing, this fermented in stainless before 6 months in neutral, large format French oak. Vibrant stone fruit — nectarine, peach, apricot peel — is scented with tropical melon, pineapple, guava, all wrapped around a waxen, expansive core, and framed with gentle wood spicing. Structural and generous, but held to a 13.5 degree declaration, this young wine well suits protein pairings now, or a couple years' rest in the cellar.
A blend of the classic Bordeaux varietals. Shows a young-looking deep plum red. Raspberry, cherry, vanilla and tobacco on the nose. Fresh, fruity red berry flavours in nice balance lead to a long finish. Classy wine. Will improve for at least 2 more years.
Soft on the sides, sappy on the palate and snipped on the finish, this Merlot is sourced from vineyards 20-60 km from the coast in Swartland, Paarl, Overberg and Stellenbosch. Fruit from these 17- to 19-year-old-vines were cold soaked and fermented in stainless with ample pump overs. Post-ferment, 20% saw time in stainless, with the remainder in contact with wood staves. Plum and cherry jam dominate, with some wet wood, medicinal cherry on the back end, choked out with spice. Though blocky in form, the soft sides and jammy fruit will attract many cushy Merlot fans.
Opens on the nose with lively fresh raspberry laced with peppery spice. Both raspberry and blackberry flavours kick in on the palate, supported by lightly firm tannins, appetising acidity and a dash of bitter dark chocolate. Quite Rhone-like in style, though with more opulent fruit.