My wine tasting group has not tried Pinotage yet, so I though it would be appropriate to introduce this unique South African varietal to them. Spier is well known and produces several different cuvees, ranging from the lighter everyday wines to blockbuster collectables. This one is middle of the road and offers a glimpse into the style of wine that can be enjoyed over time. Quite brooding and inky it has a funky nose with forest floor, tar, licorice, fresh cut wood, plantain, creamy coffee, Sel Gris and blackberry. On the palate it exhibited textbook flavors of coffee, blackberry, Rooibos tea, baked raspberry, blueberry, acetate and raisin. The word jammy was used. Tannins were medium as was the acidity. This cross between Pinot Noir and Cinsault is much darker and intense than either of its parents, which surprised many in the group. Overall it was well received and got 91 points from me. We paid $36 per bottle making it a 5 star effort that can be drunk now or cellared till 2026. Salut….
Another of my mate Johnny’s wines, this was a stunner. Simply breathtaking. A Bordeaux Blend with depth, richness and staying power. Deep purple in the glass with a rich and layered nose of gorgeous cassis, mint, stewed blackcurrants, cooked blueberry, coffee, smoke and cloves. Stunning. On the palate it is full bodied with well melded tannins, good acidity and complexity with flavors of blackberry, mint, tar, oak by way of smoke, clove and a medicinal note. There’s a touch of bitterness on the back end to remind me that the tannins are still young. This wine is well developed but has years ahead with potential for tertiary development. I’m excited to have tried it and wish I could get more to watch for development. 93 points and at $45 it’s a 5 star effort. Drink till 2028. Well done! Salut….
It’s been a while since I had a bottle of the Faithful Hound, so when I saw it- had to be done even though the new label is completely boring compared to the older versions! The wine looks a touch cloudy and semi opaque in the glass. The nose shows off nice plums, blackberry and licorice notes. The palate is very juicy with a nice plum core, very fine grained tannins that are not obtrusive at all and a decent graphite note. The mid palate gives me more dark fruit and a jolt of that acidity, it’s rather pleasing. The finish is a touch dry but not overbearing. The licorice and graphite notes are very prominent. Blackberry jam features as well. It lasts a good 20 seconds. A tasty, easy drinking wine that will pair well with a variety of foods. Drink till 2025. 89 points, and 4 stars for this $17 Bordeaux blend. Salut….
Pale straw color in the glass for this 70% Chardonnay and 30% Pinot Noir blend. On the nose, strawberry and cherry flavors mingle with nutmeg. On the palate I get much more fruit flavor than I was expecting, it is lush and vibrant with more strawberry, a trace of rhubarb and capsicum. The mid palate shows a touch of acidity and some minerality. The finish is of decent length and much the same for flavors. Refreshing and satisfying describe this 88 pointer from South Africa. Yours for $10 makes this a 4 point wine that will pair tonight with roast pork shoulder and spiced Basmati rice. Drink till 2020. Salut….
It’s summer, which means Rose’. I have recently started to enjoy and understand a bit more about this style of wine so when I saw one made from Cabernet Sauvignon- I had to try. It is a much deeper shade of reddish pink than most Rose’ wines, probably a longer maceration with the skins to give it the color. On the nose it is quite fresh with strawberry, citrus, almond and pear coming through. On the palate this chilled wine is delicious. Lemon, blood orange and strawberry are my initial tastes. It has a touch of acidity that refreshes the palate beautifully. The reddish fruit (Strawberry and blood orange) carry through the mid palate. The transition to the finish is seamless with the addition of some pear and more lemon zest. It leaves the gums pleasantly tingling with some acidity and that lingering blood orange tinge. A really yummy summer quaffer that will refresh while preparing dinner or go great with Salmon, salad or grilled garlic chicken. Drink till 2022. 89 points and 5 stars for this $12 effort. PS. I’m a fan of Mulderbosch wines and this one did not disappoint. Salut….
Wow- inky, dark, thick and brooding in appearance. The nose is focused, plum torte and blackberry extract are my first impressions. On the palate it’s full of dark fruits, tar, mint and a meaty component. The tannins are so mild, melded and unobtrusive- making this a great sipping wine. It’s flavorful, easygoing, adaptable yet complex. The finish is really smooth with nice blackberry jam and bacon notes. Medium length. This is not a dry nor sweet wine- just nicely balanced between the extremes. Drink till 2022. 90 points and 4 stars for this $20 effort. The pros went higher, perhaps I need to re-calibrate! Salut….