If you could imagine great Pauillac meeting glorious Napa Valley Cab in your glass…. then you might truly have the perfect “bridge between two worlds”. This is we like to tell people when attempt to place South Africa’s wine style in context. Old World meets New World….in your glass. Jancis Robinson reckons the 1966 vintage of this wine was the “best Bordeaux red she tried from that year, from anywhere”. 1968 was also a great vintage. The owner off this farm died several years later, sadly, before his wine achieved international acclaim as the best red wine ever produced in South Africa. Bittersweet! In 2008 our producer David Finlayson, convinced the owner’s daughter to let him make a Cab, in honor of her late father, George Spies (GS). It’s one of the most wonderful stories of our industry – the reincarnation of greatness – a true category leader. World class wine with an equally impressive story! David is the quintessential “garagiste” and is focused on small production wines of high quality. His barrel shed for this wine, is an old decommissioned, refrigerated rail car, once used for the transportation of milk. He sunk it into a hillside behind the winery and today it houses his barrels of GS Cab.
The wine displays Cabernet Sauvignon cassis and blackcurrant fruit on the nose as well as having a fresh minty, herbaceousness, backed by mocha/vanilla. Firm structured tannins and a long finish on the palate show great ageing potential. This vintage was picked at slightly lower sugars than previous vintages due to this being 3rd year of drought and the vines struggled. To prevent stress on the vines and grapes, picking was done 7-10 days earlier than normal. This resulted in a fresher style of GS for the 2018 vintage. Grapes from this special, low yielding, old, heavy clay and gravel soil vineyard, was hand-picked in small boxes before being berry sorted at the winery. Not much sorting necessary as these pea-sized berries and tiny bunches were in perfect condition. Alcoholic fermentation was done in closed 3000L tanks, with cultured yeasts. Only the free run juice is used to make GS – (bag) pressed juice is separated and used for his lower tier Cab. Maceration lasted 21 days, with pump overs twice daily. Once ready, wine was racked to med-toast French oak (50% new & 50% 2nd fill) where is spent 18 months. During this time it received 1 racking. Coarse filtration and Vegecol fining were done, along with a tiny sulfur adjustment, pre-bottling. This is a wine made to be a benchmark amongst SA Cabernet Sauvignons, while not being the more typical greener style of many Stellenbosch Cabs, but rather riper, more fruit driven. It is built to last multiple decades. 4000 btls made.
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93 pts Decanter