Just Wine Bordeaux style white blend, Cape Town, JD Pretorius, King John, Magna Carta 2007, Magna Carta 2011, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, South Africa, Steenberg Wine Estate, The Great Charter of the Liberties of England
In five days from today it will be exactly 799 years since the signing of the Magna Carta – The Great Charter of the Liberties of England by King John. The document served as the first ever attempt to limit the power of the monarch, the forerunner of the modern day constitution.
Almost 10 000 km away and centuries later Steenberg Wine Estate came up with their own great charter. The Steenberg Magna Carta was first released from 2007 vintage grapes to huge acclaim. A blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon, the wine set a new benchmark for South African Bordeaux style white blends at the time. Last week we attended the Magna Carta Roadshow – Steenberg taking the 2011 vintage around the country with a series of lunches.
The style of the wine has definitely changed. Where the 2007 was quite green and austere, the 2011 is more approachable – it is less linear, the barrel fermented Semillon gives it a creamy note and for me it is definitely easier than any of the other vintages at the same age. That said, don’t expect an easy ride – the wine is complex, has serious weight and breadth and is not for everyone at R525 a bottle at the cellar. You won’t regret buying and cellaring some. The wine will go for quite some time. More
Just Wine Biscuit Mill, Burrata, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cape Town, Christian Eedes, Christian Eedes Cabernet Sauvignon Report, James Pietersen, Kleine Zalze Family Reserve 2009, Knorhoek Pantère 2011, Oldenburg Vineyards 2011, Rickety bridge, Rickety Bridge Paulina's Reserve 2011, Roland Peens, Rustenberg Peter Barlow 2009, Sanlam Private Investments, South Africa, SPI, Spier Woolworths reserve 2011, Spier Woolworths The Hutton Single Vineyard 2012, Thelema, Thelema 2010, Top Ten, Warwick Blue Lady 2010, Waterford, Waterford 2011, Wine Cellar, Woodstock
The third annual Christian Eedes Cabernet Sauvignon Report, presented by Sanlam Private Investments (SPI), has seen a hierarchy of quality among local wines in the category start to emerge. Wineries such as Rickety Bridge, Thelema and Waterford have shown admirable consistency in the Top Ten over the years, and overall, the category is looking strong. Bear in mind that this is not a talent spotting competition; entries are per invitation only. This report aims to establish a recognised benchmark for the second most planted grape variety in South Africa.
Christian Eedes, James Pietersen & Wynand Grobler from Rickety Bridge
The Top 10 Cabernet Sauvignons were revealed at a gathering at Burrata at the Biscuit Mill in Woodstock on Thursday, 22 May 2014. A total of 60 wines were tasted and judged by a panel that was led by Christian Eedes and included renowned tasters Roland Peens and James Pietersen from Wine Cellar. More
Just Wine 1966 GS, Bordeaux style reds, Buitenverwachting, Buitenverwachting Christine, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cape Mentelle, Cape Town, Chateau Canon, Chateau Leoville-Barton, George Spies, GS, Lanzerac, Nederburg, Ridge Monte Bello, SASA, Sassicaia, South Africa, South African Sommeliers Association, South African wine
Yesterday I had the privilege to taste a few aged Bordeaux style wines with the South African Sommeliers Association. The aim was to see how this style of wine ages, to compare the difference in regional ageing and, well, just to see what these older wines taste like!
Ageing wine is not an exact science (much like ageing of humans…); there are so many factors that impact on ageability: Vine age, quality of the grapes at harvest, ph levels, temperature during growing season, oxygenation, wine making technique and storage are just a few. Interesting fact: Every 8 degree Celsius increase in temperature initiates a chemical reaction changing some component of the wine. Those pretty kitchen designs with the slots for wine storage all around the stove will alter your wine to render it unpalatable.
Here are my personal highlights of the tasting: More
Just Wine Cape Town, Constantia, Eagle's Nest, Eagle's Nest 2010 Shiraz, screwcap, Shiraz, South Africa, Stuart Botha
We have written extensively about Eagle’s Nest; about the estate and its wines. Eagle’s Nest is known for its award winning Shiraz and has built its reputation on the variety.
Just Wine Cabernet Sauvignon, Cape Town, Chamonix, Chamonix Cabernet Sauvignon 2009, Franschhoek, Gottfried Mocke, South Africa, Wine Cellar, Winery of the Year
Making a withdrawal of a case or 2 of wines stored at the Wine Cellar is a bit like having your birthday halfway through the year; unpacking the cases, unwrapping bottle after bottle, ooh-ing and ah-ing over every label, every vintage…
The early arrival of winter was the flimsy excuse for opening our newly “discovered” bottle of Chamonix Cabernet Sauvignon 2009, carefully crafted by gifted winemaker Gottfried Mocke and team. Chamonix has won acclaim as Winery of the Year and heaps of accolades for individual wines, they do not produce a wine that we do not enjoy.
Just Wine Blackwater Wine, Cape Town, Carignan, Francois Haasbroek, Grenache, MMX Noir, MMXI Noir, Shiraz, South Africa, Walker Bay, Waterford
Blackwater Wine is the brainchild of Francois Haasbroek, who cut his teeth at Waterford Estate in Stellenbosch. We met Francois during an extremely informative lecture he gave on Burgundy during our WSET level 3 course. His passion for and in-depth knowledge of his subject shone through and it was no surprise when we heard that he is striking out on his own, producing wine under his own label.
Just Wine Bordeaux style blend, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cape Town, Dalla Cia Giorgio 2007, Dalla Cia Giorgio 2011, Dalla Cia Pinot Noir 2011, Giorgio Dalla Cia, Meerlust, Merlot, Pan E Vino, Petit Verdot, premium wines, South Africa, Stellenbosch
Giorgio Dalla Cia needs no introduction to any lover of South African wine; after all, he was the wine maker that put Meerlust on the map and subsequently set out under his own name. His wines are as well known as his Grappa and the family’s Italian food and wine bar (Pan E Vino) set in Stellenbosch.
The bar is clearly set high at Dalla Cia: Premium wines are produced that sell at premium prices. Last year we purchased a bottle of his maiden release Dalla Cia Pinot Noir 2011 – this is no light weight tooty fruity Pinot Noir. “Robust” is the word that springs to mind, “serious” would be another and doubtless “delicious” would complete this short description. Will we buy it again (if an when we can afford it) – Yes.
Just Wine Cape Town, Constantia, Eagle's Nest, Merlot, Shiraz, South Africa, Stuart Botha, Viognier
We recently had the fortune of being at the right place at the right time: A visit to Eagle’s Nest while they were tasting every single vintage of their wines ever produced. This is the type of thing that makes us wine geeks very excited – a rare opportunity to taste library stock and thus see how the estate (and its young wine maker) has developed.
Eagle’s Nest has graced the pages of our virtual publication before (click here) and we are regular visitors to the estate, introducing as many friends as possible to a (now) bastion of quality and elegance.
News, Restaurants Buitenkant Street, Cape Town, Fiona Swart, I love my laundry, laundry, South Africa
The new year has started with a “bang” in the I Love My Laundry house with the opening of a third store in Buitenkant Street.
Events, Just Wine aromatic wine, Botrytis, Cape Town, Caroline's, Egon Muller-Scharzof, German riesling, Germany, Hartenberg, Howard Booysen, Jancis Robinson, Jordan, Jorg Pfhutzner, Mosel, noble rot, Paul Cluver wines, Rhein River, Rheingau region, Riesling, Riesling Rocks, Scharzhofberger, South Africa, Spioenkop, trockenbeerenauslese, turpine
I like the aromatic wine category. Mainly because they are often interesting and pair well with the spicy, fusion type flavours I like in food. And mainly because they are not as run of the mill as a Sauvignon Blanc or a Chardonnay (which I love for other reasons) In particular I like Riesling. The great white grape from Germany, where it is made in a myriad of styles and sold at everything from super market knock off prices to eye poppingly expensive. Sadly South African Riesling is few and far between and only a handful is remotely interesting. Typically I like Riesling with a bit of sugar on them, and again there are few in the South African context that isn’t fermented dry. There are of course exceptions and I quaff these whenever I get the opportunity.