4 Stars 2021 Platter’s South African Wine Guide
Stellenbosch & Franschhoek components blended after 16 months in French oak, third new, form a happy marriage of tangy blackcurrant fruit & subtle baking spices. 18 (89 pts) not quite as silky, refined as 17.
Grapes for the wine originate from vineyards at Stellenbosch (67%) and Franschhoek (33%)
In order to create a complex wine, grapes from two areas were combined — Franschhoek for pure berry fruit with a creamy texture, and Stellenbosch for the volume of the grapes and a light mint spice. The fruit combines well with the aroma and tannins promoted by the oak barrels, to produce a full-bodied wine that will mature well.
The dry conditions during the preceding two seasons continued and caused the harvest to be 15% smaller than that of 2017. It was, therefore, one of the smallest harvests in 15 years. The preceding winter was cold enough, but started late. This delayed budding and, eventually, harvesting started approximately two weeks later than in 2017. Dry and windy conditions once again allowed the grapes to stay healthy, while cool conditions promoted flavour retention. In some areas damage was caused by frost.
Thanks to its prominent minerality, firm tannins and flavourful intensity, this wine is a natural partner to lamb and beef, while it goes well with almost any other meat. Try it with your pick of pork, venison, marinated steak, rare beef or a wintery mushroom stroganoff. It also works well
with root vegetables such as beetroot, charred onions as well as hard herbs such as rosemary and thyme.