By the mid-1980s, Kanonkop was experiencing an ever-growing demand for its estate wines. This had led to new plantings of Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinotage. While the new vineyards were a blessing in terms of future increased volumes, the ethos of Kanonkop’s cellar, under Beyers Truter at the time, required that these newer vines reach a certain stage of maturity before the fruit was deemed good enough to be vinified into a wine that portrayed the depth and complexity associated with Kanonkop.
It was Jannie Krige who came up with the idea of making a second label under the name Kadette. The thinking behind the new name was logical: with the military association of ‘kanon’ (cannon) in Kanonkop, the Kadette was deemed a deserved junior to the more senior main brand.
The grapes used in the Kadette range of wines no longer come from the Kanonkop vineyards; the demand is too great and the volume required simply too large. However, every bunch of grapes brought in for the making of Kadette is subjected to the same meticulous processes in the winery as the Estate range.
This wine features the classic characteristics of South Africa’s famous home-grown grape variety. Autumnal, juicy dark fruit is complemented by an enticing savoury character with just a hint of underlying sweetness. Ageing in used French oak barrels produces a lean, muscular structure and supple tannins.
92 pts Tim Atkin MW 2020
Abrie Beeslaar has a magic touch with Pinotage, whatever the price point. This 450,000 – bottle example, most of it bought from local growers, is spicy, textured and very lightly wooded, with classic raspberry and red fruit and supple tannins. 2021-26
WINEMAKER Abrie Beeslaar
COMPOSITION 100% Pinotage
AGE OF VINES 6 to 21 years
SOIL TYPE Decomposed Granite and Hutton
YIELD 6 – 7 tons per hectare
AGEING POTENTIAL 5 to 7 years from vintage
PRODUCTION VOLUME 60 000 cases (6 x 750ml)
FOOD PAIRING Pizza | Pasta | Barbequed meat | Venison stew | Beef or lamb burgers | Thai cuisine
Winter rainfall was higher than the previous two winters. Irregular temperatures from winter until the flowering period, together with cool growing conditions, led to great variations in the vineyards. The cool weather and regular rain showers led to less water stress for the vines during ripening. Harvest time was characterized by regular rain showers.
WINEMAKING / MATURATION
Fermentation took place in open top concrete fermenters at 280C. The floating skins were punched down mechanically, every 2 hours during fermentation.
The juice was drawn off the skins after 3 days. After malolactic fermentation the wine was matured for 12 months in 2nd and 3rd fill 225L French Nevers oak barrels.
Intense purple hues with lively aromas of fresh plums, mulberries and allspice, followed by a meaty undertone. The palate displays an inherent earthy touch, with flavors of crimson beetroot and maraschino cherries. Coherent balance between the fruit and the fresh acidity, with muscular support from the tightly woven tannin structure.