south africa image
 
 

South African Red Wine

We're now working with some of the top wineries in South Africa (directly), and several boutique importers, to bring many of the very best South African wines to the UK market. These wines are beautifully crafted, often in tiny quantities and represent excellent value for money. Please give them a try, you will be blown away by the quality.

Now here's a country which has suffered at the hands of unscrupulous wine merchants and the large factory produced brands. I've tasted virtually hundreds of frankly awful South African wines wondering what all the fuss was about in the media. How could a nation have such a large wine industry if it was all such poor quality? The truth is, there are good South African wines - in fact there are world class South African wines - we just have to search very hard to find them in the UK amongst the mass of cheap plonk that's swamping the supermarkets, and the low end on-trade offerings.

We're personally very impressed by the quality of the boutique wines in South Africa, so we're actively sourcing more wines from small ethical producers, and we're importing these ourselves cutting out the importer's margin to bring them to you at the best prices.

Many of these wines are exclusive to us in the UK and are amongst the finest to come from the Cape.
 
 

Kaapzicht Steytler Pentagon 2012

Michaelangelo Double Gold

Platter 4.5 Stars

IWC Gold

A host of awards for previous vintages

I've been a big fan of the best reds from Kaapzicht for some time since I visited the farm and met the family a few years back. I didn't meet Danie Jnr (the winemaker) unfortunately as he was away but I had a long chat with his wife and also his mother (Yngvild) who I regularly see at wine shows in the UK. I was really impressed by their dedication to producing exceptional wines at the top end, despite the high costs involved in sourcing only the best French oak, which can be prohibitive for a family winery. But Danie stuck to his principles of always using the best to get the best results for his top wines, and it has paid off as he is very highly regarded amongst his peers, particularly for Pinotage.

The estate is in the Bottelary Hills district of Stellenbosch, to the north. pretty close to both Jordan and Zevenwacht although you have to go right round the houses if you want to move between them as all have their entrances on different sides.

They were included in the Top SA Hall of Fame and also in the Top 20 SA Wine Cellars.

This Pentagon is a five way blend (hence the name). I have stocked previous vintages and they have been fantastic with a real array of awards winning everything from Veritas Double Gold, IWC Best in Class, Best Stellenbosch Red Blend and literally dozens more.

60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot, 5% Malbec, vinified separately and matured in small, 100% new French oak barrels for 24 months before being blended together.

This wine is in a real heavyweight bottle wrapped in thick quality paper. It looks extremely impressive!

Kaapzicht Website

Further Information on Kaapzicht Steytler Pentagon 2012

Price: £35.00



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

MA
John's Rating

94 Points

Quantity:  


Kaapzicht Steytler Pentagon 2012
 
 
Joubert Tradauw
 
 

Joubert Tradauw, Barrydale

A unique tiny family winery in a little known but seriously up and coming region of South Africa outside the more traditional winelands. Barrydale is approximately 150 miles east of Cape Town on the incredibly scenic Route 62. The Tradauw Valley is famous for it's magnificent scenery, and if you plan to drive the Garden Route this is a "must see", far more impressive than driving N2 to the south.

Meyer Joubert is viticulturist and winemaker. Brought up in the Tradauw Valley, Meyer travelled and worked in Napa before returning to the family farm. Initially it was fruit but they quickly realised the region's unique potential for growing premium grapes. It is something to do with the valley's location between two weather fronts producing unique climatic conditions - I'm no expert on these things so I won't try to explain it any more than that, but suffice to say that Meyer produces excellent grapes and subsequently some truly outstanding wines.

It is Meyer's ambition to produce South Africa's best wine, and he believes it can be done from Tradauw. He is hugely passionate about nature, and dedicated to a minimalist labour intensive approach allowing the fruit to do all the talking. He uses organic techniques and absolute minimal additives.

Meyer's wife, Beate, runs a very healthy informal deli restaurant on the property using local produce to provide delicious local delicacies. And they are into their blues music and motorbikes also. When you see R62 you can see why a biker would just love it!

Meyer's wines really are something special. Made with passion, with a real purity that I absolutely love. He only makes three wines, a hand picked classic elegant Chardonnay, a Syrah naturally fermented and unfiltered, and his R62 Blend which has been selected for SA Airlines first class. They are all superb earning Joubert Tradauw a place in South Africa's Top 10 wineries according to Neil Pendock, one of the John Platter Guide team.

Joubert Tradauw Website

 
 

Joubert Tradauw Reserve Cabernet Franc 2013 75cl

This is Meyer's flagship wine and would normally retail for £30. He has only produced 600 bottles.

However we have a small quantity on a special deal at £21.95 to introduce it to our regular UK customers. Be quick though, once this is discoverd somebody will buy the lot!

Joubert Tradauw's tasting notes:

"Hand-harvested during middle to end of March and barrel matured in new French Oak barrels for 24 months. A brooding garnet of sweet red and black hedgerow fruit combined with stewed apples and cranberry, cigar box and hints of spice. Re-assuring tannins, cedar and a strong plum finish. Drink through to 2025. Cab Franc complements any hearty meat dishes like oxtail, cock a vin, spicy foods and pulled pork.

It plays well with spicy undertones but more suitable for neutral dishes like bouillebaise or a tom jum soup, as the wine is very classic, balanced and thinly layered, with a good mouth feel and lingering palate."

We tasted it and it's fantastic! Very elegant and beautifully structured with all the elements in harmony - great fruit, oak and balanced acidity. This wine is superb!

Joubert Tradauw Website

Further Information on Joubert Tradauw Reserve Cabernet Franc 2013 75cl

Price: £21.95



Sulphite Content:
Awards:
Platter
John's Rating

93 Points
Free Sulphur
11 mg/l

Quantity:  


Joubert Tradauw Reserve Cabernet Franc 2013 75cl
 
 

Joubert Tradauw Syrah 2015 75cl

New vintage 2015. A natural wine fermented with the grapes' own yeast. Hand picked grapes, the ferment was hand plunged several times a day for 12 days. It was aged for 14 months in French oak (300 litre and 500 litre), 30% new (to give maximum oak), 30% 3rd fill and 40% 4th fill to impart more subtle flavours.

It was bottled unfiltered as usual for Meyer, to retain all the goodness and flavour so decanting or careful pouring is advised to avoid sediment.

Meyer's tasting notes state:

"This wine has a full and lively effect on the palate with a spicy cherry note and hint of guava. Earthy with soft tannins and good acidity followed by a lingering finish. Drink now through 2025."

I've just tasted it. It was too cold as it had literally just been unloaded off the wagon but I needed to get some tasting notes up on here as soon as possible. It had also not rested. However it was still excellent!

Red and black fruit with some white pepper. Very smooth, almost silky, with a good backbone of acidity and some noticeable oak on the finish. Like all Meyer's wines everything is beautifully integrated. Very "Rhone" in style with a slight citrus lift on the finish.

Joubert Tradauw Website

Further Information on Joubert Tradauw Syrah 2015 75cl

Price: £14.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:
Platter
John's Rating

90 Points
Free Sulphur
25 mg/l

Quantity:  


Joubert Tradauw Syrah 2015 75cl
 
 

Joubert Tradauw R62 2013 75cl

This vintage is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (50%), Merlot (36%) and Cabernet Franc (14%), fermented with their own natural yeasts. Hand plunged several times a day. Aged in French oak for 20 months, 30% new, 30% 3rd fill. 40% 4th fill.

Joubert Tradauw's tasting notes say:

"The cultivars that make up this classic blend (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc) were matured separately using only the best barrels. A complex note gives away to underlying tones of raspberries, blackberries and red fruit, followed by a lingering herbal finish. Drink now through 2026.

Again excllent wine - very French in style which is unusual for a South African Bordeaux blend.. Very good wine indeed!

Enjoy with beef Wellington or slow roasted shoulder of lamb or lamb knuckle on a fresh tomato and herb polenta."

Joubert Tradauw Website

Further Information on Joubert Tradauw R62 2013 75cl

Price: £18.00



Sulphite Content:
John's Rating

91 Points
Free Sulphur
30 mg/l

Quantity:  


Joubert Tradauw R62 2013 75cl
 
 

Joubert Tradauw Redfin Pinot Noir 2013 75cl

A new wine for Meyer, Pinot Noir aged for 18 months in French oak.

Joubert Tradauw's tasting notes say:

"Lithe is the best way to describe this delicate and complex wine. Matured for 18 months in French oak barrels and bottled unfiltered. A maiden release with much promise..!

Translucent wafts of red cherry and Asian spice. Dried rose petals, pomegranate and sous bois aromatics. This interesting wine has a soft, lingering finish. Drink through to 2025."

I've just tasted it and was impressed. Ruby in colour. Savoury in style, very "Burgundian" old world. I've never before found a South African Pinot Noir made in such a convincing old world style.

Full and round on the palate with savoury fruit flavours. Then the oak comes through, tempered by natural acidity on the very long finish. Meyer really has produced a unique wine here. If you like your Burgundy I think you'll be very pleased with a bottle of this!

Joubert Tradauw Website

Further Information on Joubert Tradauw Redfin Pinot Noir 2013 75cl

Price: £18.00



Sulphite Content:
John's Rating

92 Points
Free Sulphur
30 mg/l

Quantity:  


Joubert Tradauw Redfin Pinot Noir 2013 75cl
 
 
Rainbow's End
 
 
Rainbow's End is a fantastic small family winery along the Helshoogte Pass between Stellenbosch and Franschoek. The Malan family consists of Jacques and Ingrid, and their sons Anton and Francois. Francois is the viticulturist while Anton makes the wine.

I was put onto them on my last visit to Cape Town by a South African friend who runs some very good restaurants out there. Coincidentally I was passing the next day en route to Grande Provence so called in. The winery itself is pretty hard to find up a steep dirt track, effectively further up the hill behind Delair Graf and Clouds - so definitely phone ahead if you plan on visiting.

It was old world, small rustic cellar, everything done by hand - quite a contrast from the opulence and incredible wealth of Delair Graf. But what a step up in quality too! It just goes to show the best wines are often made by the smallest most passionate wineries!

All grapes are harvested by hand at dawn, then sorted by hand so only the best are used. The ferment is hand plunged 6 to 8 times per day during fermentation - all these labour intensive techniques which really make a difference to the quality of the final product.

Anton uses only minimal sulphites, and as all the fruit is such high quality the amounts needed are very low. The wine is then aged in a combination of French, American and Hungarian oak, for varying amounts of time, but at least 12 months, before it is bottled unfiltered to retain maximum flavour.

These wines are well made and excellent quality, and will keep for years. They're also very keenly priced!

 
 

Rainbow's End Family Reserve Stellenbosch 2011 75cl

Platter 4.5 Stars

"Anton and Francois Malan, direct descendants of the French Huguenot winemaker, Jacques Malan, waited patiently for ten years for their vineyard blocks to age to perfection in order to select the best possible grapes for this artisan creation.

Only the best barrels of each variety were selected, blended and aged for two years in small French oak barrels. A reflection of our Rainbow’s End terroir and one of the best wines our estate has produced to date."

Merlot 39%, Malbec 19%, Cabernet Sauvignon 19%, Petit Verdot 19% & Cabernet Franc 4% - aged in medium toast French oak for 24 months, then a further 18 months in bottle before release. Each bottle is individually numbered and only 10 barrels were produced.

This is a fantastic wine. It is elegant and sophisticated rather than big and powerful, more for the connoisseur and educated palate. Like "The Grande Provence", another excellent example of South African winemakers producing top class European style wines. I recommend you have this wine with food.

Exceptionally limited of course with only 180 bottles for the UK market. Due to it's rarity Anton has decided not to enter it for any awards, as it will be massively oversubscribed. Anton's most recent vintages have just been awarded:

Best Cabernet Franc in South Africa - Terroir Awards 2014

Best Shiraz in Stellenbosch - Terroir Awards 2014

Top 100 SA Wines (again) for his Merlot

Michaelangelo Gold for his Cabernet Sauvignon

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Family Reserve Stellenbosch 2011 75cl

Price: £29.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

94 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Family Reserve Stellenbosch 2011 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Stellenbosch 2013 75cl

SA Novare Terroir Awards - Best SA Cabernet Franc in Stellenbosch

This is a lovely wine. Classical and structured, full bodied with great mouthfeel. Dark fruit flavours, super smooth with sublime balance. This wine wouldn't be out of place at £20 per bottle.

Text from Rainbow's End website:

Composition

100% Cabernet Franc (South African Clone 1 & French clones 214 )Tasting Notes:Intense deep red, colour. Damp earth and mint chocolate on nose. Lovely earthy and tea leaf flavours with black Forest cake and black cherry. Typical vegetative and herbaceous aromas with mineralic and slight floral aftertone (violets and fynbos). Intense rich fruit and juicy palate, with layers of dark chocolate and a hint of coffee.

Maturation:12 Months in 50% new, 25,0% second fill and 25% 3rd fill French oak barrels. Two rackings during wood maturation. Thereafter bottled without filtering or fining. Natural deposits may therefore be found in the bottle. Can be enjoyed now but is anticipated to reach its optimum in 2-5 years time.

This wine was particularly impressive - highly recommended!

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Stellenbosch 2013 75cl

Price: £12.49



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

92 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Stellenbosch 2013 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

Platter 4.5 Stars

SA Novare Terroir Awards - Best SA Cabernet Franc in Stellenbosch 2016

This is the latest vintage from Anton who has a remarkable 4 wines nominated for Platter's highest rating of 5 Stars being judged now ready for the 2017 publication. Approximately 50 to 80 wines achieve 5 Stars each year from over ten thousand judged.

.

Text from Rainbow's End website:

Composition:

100% Cabernet Franc (South African Clone 1 & French Clone 214 )

Tasting Notes:

Intense dark purple colour. Oak perfume with blackberry and hazel nut on the nose. Broad smooth tannins. A ripe and succulent wine.

Maturation:

12 Months in 50% new, 25% second fill and 25% 3rd fill French oak barrels. Two rackings during wood maturation. Thereafter bottled without filtering or fining. Natural deposits may therefore be found in the bottle. Can be enjoyed now but is anticipated to reach its optimum in 2-5 years time.

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

Price: £16.00



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

92 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Stellenbosch 2014 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Limited Edition Stellenbosch 2013 75cl

Platter 4.5 Stars yet again.

Text from Rainbow's End website:

This wine is Limited for the following reasons:

Only one block on our farm (0.8 hectare) that is 100% dedicated to this label.

A single clone, 312, is used for the Ltd Release

No one in SA makes a Cabernet Franc from this clone alone, making it very unique and offering you something you cannot get anywhere else.

Yearly we produce a mere 250-350 cases of the Cabernet Franc Ltd Release.

All this being said, it is not necessarily a better wine than our Cabernet Franc, it just possesses other qualities that sets it apart. And of course there is a very limited amount available yearly. It has a more fruity body with more prominent red fruit flavours and is quite lively on the pallet.

Awards:

Cabernet Franc Limited Release 2011 - Nominated for a John Platter 5 star rating (Received 4.5 stars). The 2012 is so limited we have not entered it for any awards.

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Limited Edition Stellenbosch 2013 75cl

Price: £13.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

90 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Limited Edition Stellenbosch 2013 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Limited Edition Stellenbosch 2015 75cl

Platter 4.5 Stars

This is the latest vintage from Anton who has a remarkable 4 wines nominated for Platter's highest rating of 5 Stars being judged now ready for the 2017 publication. Approximately 50 to 80 wines achieve 5 Stars each year from over ten thousand judged.

Composition:

100% Cabernet Franc (French clone 312)

Deep red in colour, liquorice and cherries on the nose. Ripe red fruit with hints of spice on the pallate. Rich smooth mouthfeel with a lingering finish.

Maturation:

12 months in 50% new French oak, 25% 2nd fill, 25% 3rd fill. 2 racks during wood maturation. Thereafter bottled without filtering or fining.

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Limited Edition Stellenbosch 2015 75cl

Price: £17.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

90 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Cabernet Franc Limited Edition Stellenbosch 2015 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Cabernet Sauvignon Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

Platter 4.5 Stars

This is the latest vintage from Anton who has a remarkable 4 wines nominated for Platter's highest rating of 5 Stars being judged now ready for the 2017 publication. Approximately 50 to 80 wines achieve 5 Stars each year from over ten thousand judged.

Text from Rainbow's End website:

Composition:

100% Cabernet Sauvignon (French clones 23 and 169, German clone 163 and South African clones 37 and 46)

Tasting Notes:

Dark black in appearance. Cassis and Cigar box on the nose. Silky smooth tannins with a lingering dark chocolate aftertaste.

Maturation:

12 Months in 58% new wood, 17% second fill and 25% third fill French barrels. Two rackings during wood maturation. Thereafter bottled without filtering or fining. Natural deposits may therefore be found in the bottle. Can be enjoyed now but is anticipated to reach its optimum in 2-5 years time.

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Cabernet Sauvignon Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

Price: £14.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

90 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Cabernet Sauvignon Stellenbosch 2014 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Merlot Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

Top 100 SA Wines (again)

Platter 4 Stars

Delicious wine as we expect from Anton. Deep ruby purple in colour with big legs. Intense flavours of black cherry and cocoa. Super smooth and supremely balanced once again. Fantastic - either on it's own or with food from fish to roasts.

Text from Rainbow's End website:

Composition

100 % Merlot (Italian clone 12 and French clone 348)

Tasting Notes

Deep red colour with a bright purple rim. Exotic mulberries and ripe plum on nose. Serious structure and elegant fruit with hints of mint crisp chocolate and prune. Ripe juicy smooth tannins.

Maturation

12 Months in 33.3% new wood, 33.3% second fill and 33.3% third fill French barrels. Two rackings during wood maturation. Thereafter bottled without filtering or fining. Natural deposits may therefore be found in the bottle. Can be enjoyed now but is anticipated to reach its optimum in 2-5 years time.

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Merlot Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

Price: £12.49



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

91 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Merlot Stellenbosch 2014 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Merlot Stellenbosch 2015 75cl

Awaiting award info but previous vintage was awarded: Top 100 SA Wines (again)

Platter 4 Stars

Tasting notes to follow

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Merlot Stellenbosch 2015 75cl

Price: £14.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

91 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Merlot Stellenbosch 2015 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Shiraz Stellenbosch 2013 75cl

SA Novare Terroir Awards - Best Shiraz from Stellenbosch

Yet another great wine from Anton - all his wines are something special.

Text from Rainbow's End website:

Composition

100 % Shiraz (Argentinian Clone 9 & French clone 99)

Tasting Notes

Intense purple colour.Dark rich wine.( Classical French style ). A hint of white pepper with bacon,savory notes, Christmas cake, dark fruit and smokeyness. Well integrated palate of fruit ( mulberry ) and chewy tannins. Excellent companion to traditional South African meat dishes and steaks.

Maturation

12 Months in 48% new wood, 27% second fill and 25% third fill French barrels. Two rackings during wood maturation. Thereafter bottled without filtering or fining. Natural deposits may therefore be found in the bottle. Can be enjoyed now but is anticipated to reach its optimum in 3-6 years time.

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Shiraz Stellenbosch 2013 75cl

Price: £11.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

SA NOV
John's Rating

91 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Shiraz Stellenbosch 2013 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Shiraz Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

Awaing award info but 2012 and 2013 both won SA Novare Terroir Awards - Best Shiraz from Stellenbosch

Yet another great wine from Anton - all his wines are something special.

Text from Rainbow's End website:

Composition:

100 % Shiraz (Argentinean Clone 9, French Clone 174 & French clone 99)

Tasting Notes:

Deep brooding purple colour. Spices and black pepper on the nose. Full palate with smoky fynbos. Tangy tannins with a savoury aftertaste.

Maturation:

12 Months in 35% new wood, 25% second fill, 25% third fill and 15% French oak barrels. Two rackings during wood maturation. Thereafter bottled without filtering or fining. Natural deposits may therefore be found in the bottle. Can be enjoyed now but is anticipated to reach its optimum in 3-6 years time.

Stock due in week commencing 14th November

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Shiraz Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

Price: £14.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

SA NOV
John's Rating

91 Points

Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Shiraz Stellenbosch 2014 75cl
 
 

Rainbow's End Mystical Corner Stellenbosch 2015 75cl

Michaelangelo International Wine Awards - Double Gold

Michaelangelo is one of the most reliable wine award systems in the world, being made up of a panel of independent international judges. This vintage has won the highest award possible - Double Gold!

Please don't confuse this wine with the older versions of Mystical Corner (which were good wines), this is a different animal altogether!

Shiraz 34%, Malbec 24%, Cabernet Sauvignon 23% and Petit Verdot 19%

Text from Rainbow's End website:

Youthful dark purple. Punchy fruity Beaujolias style wine. Juicy and easy drinking. Unfiltered so pour carefully to avoid sediment.

Rainbow's End Website



Further Information on Rainbow's End Mystical Corner Stellenbosch 2015 75cl

Price: £10.99



Sulphite Content:
John's Rating


Quantity:  


Rainbow's End Mystical Corner Stellenbosch 2015 75cl
 
 

Grangehurst Winery Stellenbosch

Grangehurst Winery on Eikendal Road in Stellenbosch is one of South Africa's very finest wineries producing exceptional unhurried red wines (and one Rose). It was founded by Jeremy Walker back in 1992 on the slopes of the Helderberg Mountain.

On Jeremy's first vintage he won the trophy for South Africa's Champion Wine! And since then he has accumulated a very impressive array of awards including the first 5-star rating for a red wine by Wine Magazine, the only CWG wine to be rated 5-stars by Wine Magazine, the only Pinotage (Hidden Valley) to be rated 5-stars by Wine Magazine as well as a Platter 5-star award for Grangehurst Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot blend, and the Nikela has received a 92-point Parker rating (USA).

In fact the Nikela 2005 has just been voted in the top 5 Cape Blends by the Pinotage Association, winning Jeremy a trip out to California. His Cabernet Merlot 2005 just beat 8 top Bordeaux (costing five times as much or more) in a blind tasting in California too! And all his wines have consistently scored 4 to 4.5 Stars in the Platter guide, year after year. Jeremy is of course a member of South Africa's elite winemaking circle - the Cape Winemakers Guild. And Grangehurst is also Wine Magazine's most awarded 5 Star Winery.

Jeremy describes his wines as European in style with elegance and structure, rather than new world blockbusters - "French style with more fruit". They take time to produce being aged at the winery for a number of years prior to release - something unusual for new world producers.

We're delighted to be working with him bringing his excellent wines to our customers here in the UK. And if you are lucky enough to be visiting Stellenbosch Jeremy and Mandy have two cottages at the winery which make an excellent base for exploring.
 
 
Grangehurst Winery - South Africa Wine Magazine's most 5 Star awarded winery!
Grangehurst Winery  - South Africa Wine Magazine's most 5 Star awarded winery!
 
 

Grangehurst "Daylea" 2007 Shiraz Cabernet Blend

A new wine from Jeremy. It is fantastic!

Predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz matured at the winery for several years in French oak barrels.

Big nose with good legs sticking to the side of the glass. Big fruit flavours, full body. Wonderfully smooth and integrated as all Jeremy's wines are. This wine is fabulous for the price, big, powerful, smooth and complex. You don't get many winemakers anywhere releasing a 2007 belnd in 2016 for "every day" drinking!

The presentation isn't great - and we had to photoshop this image taken on my phone - but the wine is superb! Don't be put off by Jeremy's use of a bright red screwcap either. Once you taste this you will be back for more!

Grangehurst Website

Further Information on Grangehurst "Daylea" 2007 Shiraz Cabernet Blend

Price: £11.99



Sulphite Content:
John's Rating

90 Points




OUT OF STOCK

Grangehurst
 
 

Grangehurst Pinotage 2005/6

John Platter 4.5 Stars

Aged 23 months in 75% French, 25% American oak.

Consistently awarded Platter 4.5 Stars each vintage, where they describe it as one of the best Pinotages on the market. We actually drank a bottle at the winery with Jeremy in April and have to agree.

Too many South Africans are drunk too young and rely on racy acidity to mask the prominent tannin. Grangehurst is a whole new experience for South African fans.

Grangehurst Website

Further Information on Grangehurst Pinotage 2005/6

Price: £14.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

91 Points
Free Sulphur
16 mg/l

Quantity:  


Grangehurst Pinotage 2005/6
 
 

Grangehurst Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot 2006

This vintage is fantastic. An exceptional wine! I would personally back this wine against anything from Bordeaux under £30, and quite a lot of wines over £30 too. This is something special.

Grangehurst Website

Further Information on Grangehurst Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot 2006

Price: £19.49



Sulphite Content:
John's Rating

92 Points

Quantity:  


Grangehurst Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot  2006
 
 

Grangehurst Nikela 2005/6

Voted one of the Top 5 Cape Blends by the Pinotage Association 2013

John Platter 4 Stars

The word "Nikela" is an adaptation of an African word and means "to offer a gift of dedication, respect or tribute to one's ancestors" and this wine has been thus named in dedication to Eddie and Betty Walker who contributed greatly to the establishment of Grangehurst.

It's a blend of 35% Cabernet Sauvignon, 34% Pinotage, 23% Shiraz and 8% Merlot, all fermented separately and aged for 29 months in French oak (91% with 9% American).

Another fabulous wine. The Pinotage element is prominent with flavours of fruit, spice and dark chocolate. Again Jeremy's techniques of extensive barrel ageing prior to blending give this wine a complete, rounded feel with all the elements in harmony. Delicious flavours, full in the mouth yet not heavy, velvet smooth. The oak is completely integrated as are the tannins and acidity, creating an overall drinking experience not normally found in South African wines. This wine is superb.

Grangehurst Website

Further Information on Grangehurst Nikela 2005/6

Price: £19.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

91 Points
Free Sulphur
16 mg/l

Quantity:  


Grangehurst Nikela 2005/6
 
 

Grangehurst Shiraz Cabernet Reserve 2005

John Platter 4.5 Stars

67% Shiraz, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon. 9 barrels of Jeremy's finest wine were selected to make this cuvee of just over 2000 bottles. The wines were aged for 26 months in French oak (91% with 9% American) prior to blending.

Big, opulent, rich and round. The ageing gives it a mature soft palate, not the racier style you get with younger wines. Lovely flavours of dark fruit with noticeable oak, very smooth of course with a long lingering finish. Clearly a new world wine made in an old world style! It's a wine to be savoured leisurely either on it's own by the fire or with the Sunday roast.

Grangehurst Website

Further Information on Grangehurst Shiraz Cabernet Reserve 2005

Price: £24.95


Case discounts available

Case Size



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Platter
John's Rating

91 Points
Free Sulphur
10 mg/l

Quantity:  


Grangehurst Shiraz Cabernet Reserve 2005
 
 

Grangehurst Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2005

John Platter 4 Stars

5 barrels of Cabernet Sauvignon were selected for this limited release Reserve vintage producing just 1269 bottles. This is a big powerful wine with strong black fruits. Full and round with a very long finish. Not as dry as many Cabs, more new world than old in style. Delicious to savour, or enjoy with roast meats.

Grangehurst Website

Further Information on Grangehurst Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2005

Price: £24.95


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Sulphite Content:
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Platter
John's Rating

91 Points
Free Sulphur
5 mg/l

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Grangehurst Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2005
 
 

Grangehurst 2006

John Platter 4.5 Stars

The flagship wine of the estate, a Bordeaux blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot. 15 barrels of Jeremy's top wines were aged for 33 months in French oak then blended to produce 3239 bottles (and 572 magnums) of this premium wine. Jeremy describes it as both "a collector's item" and a wine to be enjoyed when you are in the mood for opening a special red.

And we agree, it is special. Big and opulent, rich, round and very smooth with a really long lingering finish. Currently one of our very best South African reds!

Grangehurst Website

Further Information on Grangehurst 2006

Price: £35.00


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John's Rating

94 Points
Free Sulphur
2 mg/l

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Grangehurst 2006
 
 
Claime D'Or
 
 

Claime D'Or, Robertson

Claime D'Or is very possibly one of the tiniest "wineries" in the world, yet produces some absolutely outstanding wines!

Basically Claime D'Or is a farm in Robertson next door to Rietvallei. It was purchased by French couple Bernardo Rappaport and his wife Maigret with the intention to produce the best wines possible.

Until recently the Robertson district was traditionally regarded as a region for lower grade fruit used in sparkling wines, hence Graham Beck have a large set up here. However it's reputation has blossomed as certain sites have been producing outstanding quality grapes, and subsequently outstanding wines.

Kobus Berger at Rietvallei is probably Robertson's star winemaker, with several wines listed in the SA Top 100 book - a publication myself and others actually have little faith in as it costs a fortune to submit your wines for approval so immediately prohibits virtually all the small producers from entering! Yes, any wine in the book will be good, but all the best 100 wines in South Africa? I don't think so!

But my political and cynical observations about wine publications aside, Kobus at Rietvallei does make some very, very good wines. So Bernardo asked him to make the wines for Claime D'Or. The grapes are all hand grown, then the wines are all hand made in tiny quantities with real care and attention to detail. For example just 300 cases of their stunning oaked Chardonnay, or 150 cases of their superb Cabernet blend!

These wines are very special indeed, very rare with a host of awards. Each bottle is individually numbered by hand. If you want a bespoke wine, they don't come more bespoke than this!

Claim D'Or Website

 
 

Claime D'Or Cabernet Franc 2010 75cl

Veritas 2014 - Gold Medal

The 2009 was awarded:

Gold Veritas 2012

Gold Michelangelo 2012

Top 100 South Africa Wine 2013

4 Stars John Platter 2013

Silver International Competition of Terroir Wines, Brignoles, France 2013

Silver London International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC) UK 2012

Text from Bernardo's website:

WINEMAKING

The selection process for this special cuvé already started with the identification of the specific vineyard and working at it with special care from pruning right through to harvesting ensuring a low yield (approximately 5 tons per hectare) and premium quality.

TASTING NOTE

This wine offers cranberry, mulberry and mocha notes on the nose with hints of fragrant cedar wood. The fruit is beautifully ripe and accessible on the palate, the tannins soft and integrated and dark chocolate lingers on the finish.

I tasted the wine out in South Africa and it was fantastic - elegant and structured with great balance between fruit, tannins, oak and acidity. Delicious to savour in front of an open fire, or enjoy with roast beef. Each bottle is individually numbered by hand with only 1600 bottles produced. Nobody even knows about Claime D'Or in South Africa, let alone here in the UK, but this wine is something special and is one of the very best wines on our site and a personal favourite of mine.



Further Information on Claime D'Or Cabernet Franc 2010 75cl

Price: £21.95



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Veritas
John's Rating

93 Points

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Claime D'Or Cabernet Franc 2010 75cl
 
 

Claime D'Or Cabernet Blend 2010 75cl

Michaelangelo 2014 - Gold Medal

Veritas 2014 - Silver Medal

The 2009 was awarded:

Gold International Competition of Terroir Wines, Brignoles, France 2013

4 Stars John Platter 2013

Bronze Veritas 2012

Silver IWSC UK 2012

Text from Bernardo's website:

This is a blend of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30% Cabernet Franc. Ripe red berries and cherry fruit abound in this blend of two noble varieties. The palate offers structure from youthful tannins and the spicy finish is reminiscent of cherry tobacco, white pepper and cloves. Will improve with ageing for at least 5 years.

I don't have my tasting notes but I do remember I was very impressed by this wine. Spicey, black fruits and super smooth. Needs half an hour to open up and it's then fantastic. Each bottle is individually numbered by hand with only 1600 bottles produced.



Further Information on Claime D'Or Cabernet Blend 2010 75cl

Price: £21.95



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MA
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93 Points

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Claime D'Or Cabernet Blend 2010 75cl
 
 

Claime D'Or Pinot Noir 2011 75cl

Veritas - Bronze Medal

Bernardo's tasting notes say:

"Cranberry fruit with hints of mint and eucalyptus and a touch of oak spice. These flavours also follow through on the palate with gentle tannins and a generous acidity. A perfect match for duck breast or antipasto. ."

We tasted it out in South Africa and it was superb - probably the best Pinot I've had from South Africa. I will need to retaste it here to add my notes though. Only a very small quantity available.



Further Information on Claime D'Or Pinot Noir 2011 75cl

Price: £21.95



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VER
John's Rating

90 Points

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Claime D'Or Pinot Noir 2011 75cl
 
 

Claime D'Or Shiraz 2011 75cl

Michaelangelo 2013 - Gold Medal

Bernardo's tasting notes say:

"On the palate the rounded red berry fruit gives a full mouth feel with silky tones of coriander and hints of coffee, mocha and bitter chocolate, ending with a noticeable toastiness and a soft touch of vanilla flavours."

We tasted it out in South Africa and it was superb - I will need to retaste it here to add my notes though. Only a very small quantity available.



Further Information on Claime D'Or Shiraz 2011 75cl

Price: £18.95



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MA
John's Rating

90 Points

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Claime D'Or Shiraz 2011 75cl
 
 

Claime D'Or Solidus Cabernet Sauvignon 75cl

A delicious wine from Bernardo. Don't be fooled into thinking this is "cheap" because of the price, this is still top quality wine and still presented in the heavyweight bottle.

Big, super smooth, wonderful balance and delicious! Perfect with a steak but also lovely on it's own.

This is great wine, big full and round, beautifully smooth. Exceptional value.



Further Information on Claime D'Or Solidus Cabernet Sauvignon 75cl

Price: £11.99



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90 Points

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Claime D'Or Solidus Cabernet Sauvignon 75cl
 
 
Boplaas Winery
 
 

Boplaas Winery, Calitzdorp

"Best Private Cellar at Veritas Wine Awards 2013 with 5 Double Gold & 6 Gold medals!

"Boplaas scoops double Gran d’Or at Michelangelo International Wine Awards 2013"

13 5 Star Platter ratings to date!

Boplaas is situated in Calitzdorp, a small picturesque village in the Southern Cape in the majestic Little Karoo. The Nel family is part of a rich legacy that reaches back to more than 150 years. Boplaas is a family concern with Carel Nel, a Cape Wine Master, as owner and cellar master.

Boplaas has long been regarded as in the forefront in premium wine production. Boplaas is known for world-class table wines, "Ports" and their award winning pot-stilled brandies.

Vineyards

The vineyards of Boplaas are located at superior sites along the Gamka River, Nel’s River and the slopes of the Gamka Valley to maximise the considerable diversity that exists in micro-climates and soil types. The different sites provide nuances of aroma and flavour, bringing complexity to the wines.

Grape varieties

Touriga Nacional, Tinta Barocca, Touriga Franseca, Souzao, Muscadel /Muscat de Frontignan, Colombar, Hanepoot/Muscat d’Alexandrie, Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinotage, Pinot Noir, Viognier, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay

Production

An area of 70 hectares is planted in Calitzdorp, with contracts in Stellenbosch, Durbanville and Darling.

Please go to our dessert wine section to view their amazing Double Gold and Trophy winning "ports".

Boplaas Website

 
 

Boplaas Pinotage 2011 75cl

Wood Aging: 8 months in French Oak Barrels

Delicious - a fabulous Pinotage. Medium bodied and smooth with flavours of cherry and red fruits with a hint of cocoa and oak on the finish. I was really impressed by this wine. It's not a sensational big hitter (at £11.99 you wouldn't expect it to be) but it is simply well made wine with great overall balance. Perfect with barbeque but also light enough to go with pasta or even chicken.

Boplaas Website



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Vegan

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Boplaas Pinotage 2011 75cl
 
 

Boplaas Touriga Nacional 2009 75cl

TOP 10 red table wine from Portuguese cultivars @ CAPPA Cape Port & Wine Challenge 2013

Tasting Notes

Marzipan and almond scents spice up plums and black berries/violet tones; long peppery finish with stoutly tannins. Will reward one endlessly with a little bottle aging.

Boplaas Website



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Boplaas Touriga Nacional 2009 75cl
 
 

Boplaas Ring of Rocks 2011 75cl

TOP 10 red table wine from Portuguese cultivars @ CAPPA Cape Port & Wine Challenge 2013

Platter 4 Stars

Tasting Notes

Deep purple-black centre with cherry-red and purple rim. Earthy, Karoo bossies (shrub) bouquet with notes of ripe fruits and hint of spice / oak. Palate of intense black cherry and red fruits, with notes of spice and cocoa. Lively acidity and youthful tannins. This is a young wine, that will reward careful cellaring. Bordeaux-blend with a dash of Portuguese spice.

I agree with these notes, they are spot on. Let the wine breathe for half an hour. It is very smooth, medium bodied with fruit and some spice. Warming on the palate with a hint of hot weather Portugal about it! There is a lift on the finish in a similar style to Rhone reds (where they blend in a little white wine). Ideal with foods like lamb or even a spicy curry.

Boplaas Website



Further Information on Boplaas Ring of Rocks 2011 75cl

Price: £16.99


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CAP
John's Rating

89 Points
Vegan

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Boplaas Ring of Rocks 2011 75cl
 
 

Boplaas Gamka Reserve 2012/13 75cl

Michaelangelo Gran D'Or (Double Gold) for this maiden vintage!

April 2014 - selected for Top 100 SA Wines

Only 3400 bottles produced.

Lovely wine. Still young of course, with racy acidity and firm tannins. This wine will certainly reward some cellaring but can be enjoyed now if you give it time to breathe and open up. I recommend decanting, ideally for a couple of hours or more to get the best out of it as it really opens up to become super smooth with flavours of plum and damson. I would partner this with barbequed meats or a roast.

Boplaas Website

Further Information on Boplaas Gamka Reserve 2012/13 75cl

Price: £19.99



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MA
John's Rating

93 Points
Vegan

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Boplaas Gamka Reserve 2012/13 75cl
 
 
Grande Provence
 
 
Grande Provence
 
 

Grande Provence, Franschoek

This is one of the finest wineries I have ever had the pleasure to visit, producing some of the finest wines I have ever tasted.

Situated just off the main road into Franschoek, Grande Provence is one of the first wineries you come to as you approach this beautiful cosmopolitan small town. It's a magnificent setting with old Dutch architecture and grand old trees shading the courtyard dining area. Statues are dotted around the gardens and the view of the hills around Franschoek is just breathtaking.

Inside the tasting area it is all modern clean lines with a circular bar furnished with unique bar stools made out of old tractor seats - designed by a New Zealand artist. There is an impressive art gallery here as well as a really top class restaurant serving exquisite food. If you visit you really must opt for their food and wine pairing experience. The walls are covered with award certificates as their incredible wines have a huge collection already, despite having only produced their first vintage in 2005.

Grande Provence was purchased in 2004 by Alex van Heeren (CVO, MBE), and now is part of the Huka Retreats, a very upmarket collection of just three premier resorts including Dolphin Island, Fiji and Huka Lodge, New Zealand. Guests at Grande Provence can rent the "owner's cottage" but it is far from a cottage! Often frequented by Royalty including our own as well as the Dutch and Norwegian Royal families, it is beyond the price range of most of us, but is absolutely beautiful.

While the estate is surrounded by vines, the secret to the quality of Grande Provence's amazing wines is that the grapes are actually sourced from very small premium individual vineyards in the surrounding hills, each producing perfect varietal fruit. The grapes grown on the flat around the farm are actually sold off to other wineries.

Production of their premium wines is very small, and the quality of them is stunning. In the UK to date the only place they have been served is Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle - 8 times between them! They will also be listed at Carlo's in Llandudno of course, as are a lot of our best wines.

Grande Provence also produce a range of every day wines under their "Angel's Tears" label but the only thing "every day" about them is their price. Even these wines are excellent quality, hand made with minimal additives or manipulation.

Grande Provence wines are something special, and we're delighted to be working with them to bring them to our UK customers.

Grande Provence Website

 
 

The Grande Provence 2012 75cl

2009 was awarded - Michaelangelo Awards September 2013 - Double Gold Medal "Outstanding" as well as The Mercurey Award Trophy for "Best Bordeaux style Blend"

Fantastic news - we have stock of the 2011 just arrived. As only a few thousand bottles are produced each vintage Grande Provence sold out of the 2010 immediately while we still had the 2009 here - shipping from SA is realistically 2 months which creates these issues for us.

We have only 60 bottles left this year.

Previous awards include the following. As grande Provence is owned by dutchman Alex van Heeren, they enter their wines in European competitions as well as South African:

2006 vintage

Vienna International Wine Challenge - Gold

Michaelangelo - Double Gold

Mundus Vini Great International Wine Award - Gold

Concours Mondial Bruxelles - Grande Gold

2005 vintage

Mundus Vini Great International Wine Award - Gold

Austrian Wine Challenge - Gold

2004 vintage

Mundus Vini Great International Wine Award - Gold

Vienna International Wine Challenge - Gold

This is the flagship wine of the estate and is magnificent.

Grande Provence Website



Further Information on The Grande Provence 2012 75cl

Price: £40.00



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MA
John's Rating

95 Points

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The Grande Provence 2012 75cl
 
 

Grande Provence Pinot Noir 2013 75cl

Michaelangelo Awards September 2013 - Gold Medal

Grande Provence Website



Further Information on Grande Provence Pinot Noir 2013 75cl

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90 Points

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Grande Provence Pinot Noir 2013 75cl
 
 

Grande Provence Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 75cl

Michaelangelo 2013 Gold Medal.

Previous awards include the following. As grande Provence is owned by dutchman Alex van Heeren, they enter their wines in European competitions as well as South African:

2008 vintage

Vienna International Wine Challenge - Gold

Mundus Vini Great International Wine Award - Gold

Concours Mondial Bruxelles - Gold

2007 vintage

Vienna International Wine Challenge - Gold

SA Terroir Awards - District Cabernet Champion

Wine of the Month Club - Top 20 of 2010

SA Veritas - Silver

2006 vintage

Mundus Vini Great International Wine Award - Gold

Austrian Wine Challenge - Gold

Decanter - Silver

Concours Mondial Bruxelles - Gold

2005 vintage

SA Terroir Awards - Champion Cabernet

Vienna International Wine Challenge - Gold

2004 vintage

Veritas - Silver

Vienna International Wine Challenge - Gold

Michaelangelo - Silver

Mundus Vini - Silver

Grande Provence Website



Further Information on Grande Provence Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 75cl

Price: £18.95



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VER
John's Rating

91 Points

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Grande Provence Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 75cl
 
 

Grande Provence Shiraz 2010 75cl

The 2008 was the highest scoring wine in the Classic Wine Top 6 Shiraz Challenge.

Previous awards include the following. As grande Provence is owned by dutchman Alex van Heeren, they enter their wines in European competitions as well as South African:

2007 vintage

Michaelangelo - Gold

SA Veritas - Silver

Vienna International Wine Challenge - Gold

Wine of the Month Club - Top 20 of 2010

Concours Mondial de Bruxelles - Silver

2006 vintage

Vienna International Wine Challenge - Silver

Veritas - Silver

Michaelangelo - Silver

Mundus Vini - Silver

Another fabulous wine. Ripe black fruits with a little white pepper. Amazingly soft and smooth.

Grande Provence Website



Further Information on Grande Provence Shiraz 2010 75cl

Price: £18.95



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Top6
John's Rating

92 Points

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Grande Provence Shiraz 2010 75cl
 
 

Angels Tears Red Blend by Grande Provence

2015 "Excellent Wine at the Price " Wine Awards - Gold Medal

A superb red for the money. Soft, smooth and fruit driven with a hint of oak. This wine is delicious for everyday drinking.

Grande Provence Website



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Angels Tears Red Blend by Grande Provence
 
 
Eagles Nest, Constantia
 
 

Eagles Nest - Constantia

Eagles Nest is a tiny boutique winery in Constantia immediately south of Cape Town toward the Cape of Good Hope. They are very fortunate to have one of the highest vineyards in SA as well as a unique topographical position with their vineyards set out in a bowl shape.

This means they have slopes facing every direction, at different altitudes and angles to the sun, as well as receiving cooling breezes off False Bay. This gives them the opportunity to match each grape variety to it's ideal terroir!

The winery and vineyards burnt down in 2004 in a huge bush fire so they took the opportunity to replant each individual site with it's ideal grape match. And what success!

Since the fire (vintage 2006) they only make 6 wines - "Little Eagle" which is their every day red (to use up any fruit they deem not perfect!), a Viognier which is not available for commercial sale as the entire production is taken by British Airways First Class. A Sauvignon Blanc (Veritas Gold Medal), a Merlot based Bordeaux Blend "Verraux" (93 Points Robert Parker), a Merlot, and their most famous wine, Shiraz, which has won just about everything including Platter 5 Stars, Southern Hemisphere Champion Shiraz, 100 Point rating and host of trophies and golds.

Everything is hand crafted from start to finish with real passion. These very steep slopes are difficult and expensive to farm so they concentrate on producing small quantities of very high end wines.

Eagles Nest Website

 
 

Eagles Nest Shiraz 2010

Platter 2014 - 5 Stars

Veritas Wine Awards October 2013 - Double Gold Medal (highest award possible).

October 2013 - Diamond Award at the Winemakers Choice Awards

Robert Parker 93 Points

Both Veritas and Michaelangelo are amongst the most reliable, unbiased awards in South Africa, unlike some which seem to have a commercial aspect to them!

This 2010 Eagle's Nest Shiraz is a new release but Du Toit tells me they believe it is their best vintage yet - considering their previous vintages have won just about everything that is pretty impressive! No need to say any more!

2009 vintage

South African Wine Index Platinum Award for 100 Point Wine

Best Shiraz Trophy, 5 Nations Wine Challenge

Selected for Premium Class, South African Airways

Gold Medal, South African Airways Wine Awards

5 Star Nominee, 2013 Platter Wine Guide

Highly Recommended, 2013 Platter Wine Guide

91 Parker Points

2008 vintage

Best Shiraz Trophy, Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show

Best Red Wine Trophy, Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show

WINE Magazing Top Ten, 2010 Shiraz Challenge

Red Wine Trophy, Winemakers Choice awards

Decanter Expert’s Choice: South African wines over £10 – Score: 19/20 points

5 Stars, 2011 Platter Wine Guide

100-points, South African Wine Index

Robert Parker 91 Point Wine

2007 vintage

Silver Medal Syrah du Monde

Bronze Medal, Old Mutual Wine Trophy Show

Silver Medal, Michelangelo International Wine Awards

Shiraz Diamond Awards, Investec Private Bank Winemakers Choice Awards

Best Red Wine Trophy, Investec Private Bank Winemakers Choice Awards

Gold Medal, Veritas

Best Shiraz Trophy, International Wine and Spirit Competition

2006 vintage

5 Stars, 2009 Platter Wine Guide

Best Red Overall, Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show

Gold Medal, Swiss International Airlines Wine Awards

Diamond Award, Winemakers Choice Awards

Silver Medal, International Wine and Spirit Competition

Best in Class, International Wine and Spirit Competition

Silver Medal, Juliet Cullinan Wine Awards

Gold Medal, Veritas Awards

Last bottle in stock.

Eagles Nest Website

Further Information on Eagles Nest Shiraz 2010

Price: £26.99



Sulphite Content:
Awards:

Veritas
John's Rating

94 Points
Free Sulphur
21 mg/l




OUT OF STOCK

Eagles Nest Shiraz 2010
 
 

Robertson Number One Constitution Road Shiraz 2012

No awards yet as this is a brand new release, but every vintage has won at least one Gold medal! This is a big favourite of ours, consistently excellent every vintage.

This is the flagship wine from this highly successful winery. Although it's now grown to be South Africa's third largest producer, this is because it's grower owned with a firm focus on producing quality wines at affordable prices. Platter describes this wine as 'Rich, powerful and alluring. Layers of ripe red berries, vanilla and cinnamon, sheathed in svelte harmonious fruit, and oak tannins (34 months in French and American oak). Bold, structured and poised'. I was tipped off about this wine by a colleague who was involved with the winery, and bought some on his recommendation. I'll be adding my tasting notes shortly although I can never be as clear and concise as Platter!

Please note presentation for this vintage has changed. The wine is still excellent although the free sulphur content is a little higher than we'd like so we don't recommend this for anybody with a sulphite allergy.

Robertson Website

Further Information on Robertson Number One Constitution Road Shiraz 2012

Price: £16.80



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John's Rating

92 Points

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Robertson Number One Constitution Road Shiraz 2012
 
 
Zevenwacht Winery Stellenbosch
 
 
Zevenwacht

As all our regular customers know, we personally select every wine on this site on it's own merits, we don't simply list every wine from each producer. We are listing nearly all the Zevenwacht portfolio though as all their wines are very good, and offer great value for money.

Zevenwacht is a large estate of 500 hectares with 200 hectares planted to vine. Their winemaker, Jacques Viljoen, takes a bold approach to winemaking, using modern technology as well as traditional cellaring techniques to produce elegant premium wines. I've been listing their wines since 2008 and every year they get better and better. We have a good relationship with Denise (the owner) and we were even involved in creating a white blend for her on our recent trip out there - I hope it goes down well Denise! Zevenwacht's consultant winemaker Chris Keets is a bit of a perfectionist, and he even makes a small batch Bordeaux Blend under his own label which we will probably import when he makes enough to let us have any!

The estate comprises as well as the winery, of a cheese factory, a chef school, top restaurant with banquetting and conferencing facilities, as well as an inn and guest cottages, and is a fully licensed wedding venue all set in stunning surroundings! There's a fantastic little shop where you can purchase a picnic to take down by the lake with your wine to while away the afternoon - just make sure you are not the driver!

The estate is a big place and surprisingly easy to get lost on your first visit as all signs seem to say "Zevenwacht ...something" but once you reach the lake it's straight forward from there! I've been assured the signage will shortly be improved.

Their vineyards back right onto Jordans, and interestingly Denise is about to launch the first vintage of a superb barrel aged Chardonnay this year - something Jordans are world famous for. I tasted it and it was fantastic so fingers crossed Zevenwacht's UK importers will actually bring some over if I pester them enough!

 
 

Zevenwacht Z Rhone Blend Stellenbosch 2010 75cl

2012 Veritas Bronze Medal for the 2009.

The 2008 was awarded: Michael Angelo Gold Medal

Veritas Wine Awards Silver Medal

Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show Bronze Medal

John Platter 4 Stars

IWSC Silver Medal.

Syrah 67%, Mouverdre 6% and Grenache 27%. This is a fantastic Rhone blend and a long time favourite of ours. It's a firm favourite with many of our regulars too.

Zevenwacht Website

Further Information on Zevenwacht Z Rhone Blend Stellenbosch 2010 75cl

Price: £19.94



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John's Rating

90 Points

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Zevenwacht Z Rhone Blend Stellenbosch 2010 75cl
 
 

Zevenwacht Tin Mine Red Stellenbosch 2012/14 75cl

Platter 4 Stars

A long time favourite of ours. This vintage is 50% Syrah, 30% Grenache and 20% Mourvedre.

Big, rich and warming!

Zevenwacht's tasting notes state:

"Dark purple red in colour, with the nose that exudes aromas of violets, dried spices and concentrated black fruits with a slow release of mocha and dark chocolate. The palate impresses with density on entry matched with persistent yet supple tannins a multi layered wine. This texture is perfectly offset by balanced acidity that allows for a remarkable length of finish."

Zevenwacht Website

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Zevenwacht Tin Mine Red Stellenbosch 2012/14 75cl
 
 
jordan image
 
 
Jordan

The Jordan winery today is run by Gary and Kathy Jordan making some outstanding world class wines. The 300 year old 146 hectare farm was purchased by Gary's parents - Ted and Sheelagh - back in 1982, when they undertook an extensive replanting programme of all the vineyards. Gary and Kathy spent a couple of years abroad learning their wine making skills then returned home in 1992 and began producing quality wines from 1993 onwards, once the vines were mature.

Gary and Kathy are 'next door neighbours' and close friends with Denise of Zevenwacht - although I wouldn't like to walk from one house to the other! The secret to both estates' success is largely due to the same factors - yes, you need wine making skill and experience as well as a dedication to producing the best quality wine possible, but both these estates also have an array of different terroirs. Here lies the real skill of matching each grape variety to it's ideal terroir. Because of the specific landscape both estates have slopes facing to all four points of the compass, all at different altitudes, different degrees of slope and aspect to the sun, and all on 600 million year old soils with unique qualities. Add to this the cooling Atlantic and Indian oceans and the mediteranean climate and there's a myriad of different combinations.

The Jordans have got it right - and so have Zevenwacht - with each variety in it's ideal location producing optimum fruit. Their wines are highly recommended.

The Jordan estate has one of the most spectacular views in Stellenbosch, which is a truly stunning location to enjoy lunch in the George Jardine restaurant. Being on the west of Stellenbosch on a hill they have a view east across to the Heldeberg and the mountains separating Stellenbosch from Franschoek. It is a real "must see" if you plan to visit the South African wine lands.
 
 

Jordan Cobblers Hill Stellenbosch 2013 75cl

2013 just released. No doubt some awards will be announced soon.

Jordan's website states:

TASTING NOTES

The palate is richly layered and intriguing with a variety of opu-lent flavours which includes Sichuan pepper and blackcurrants. The 24-month barrel ageing adds viscosity and a spicy finish.

HARVESTING

Cabernet Sauvignon between the 12th & 17th of March 2013 at 23.6 – 23.8°B; Merlot between the 6th & 23rd of March 2013 24.7 -25.0°B; Cabernet Franc on the 13th March 2013 at 24.1°B.

WINEMAKING & MATURATION

Fermented in overhead retort-shaped, stainless steel fermentors at 28°C. Three pump-overs were done daily over the fermenting cap. After pressing, the wine was racked to barrel where it fin-ished malo-lactic fermentation. A selection of the best barrels was made and the wine spent a total of 24 months in 225 litre French oak barrels.



Further Information on Jordan Cobblers Hill Stellenbosch 2013 75cl

Price: £22.80



Sulphite Content:
John's Rating

90 Points




OUT OF STOCK

Jordan Cobblers Hill Stellenbosch 2013 75cl
 
 

Jordan "NAS" Chameleon Merlot Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

The latest release of their No Added Sulphur Merlot. Soft, fruity and easy drinking.

Jordan Website

Further Information on Jordan "NAS" Chameleon Merlot Stellenbosch 2014 75cl

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Jordan
 
 
Ernie Els image
 
 
The Ernie Els winery is one of the most pristine and professional wineries in Stellenbosch. I suppose you would expect nothing less given that Ernie had the money to create his vision from scratch, rather than have to make his money from wine sales first! The result is quite spectacular.

Set at the foot of the Heldeberg, this is Stellenbosch's premium region for red wines given that the slopes are north facing with a steep angle to the sun and cooling breezes from False Bay. This pedigree is borne out by the other prestigious red wine producers they have as neighbours - Grangehurst (some of the best reds in SA), Rust en Vrede, Guardian Peak, Eikendal and more.

Ernie set up in partnership with his pal Jean Engelbricht with Louis Strydom as winemaker. Jean and Ernie have parted ways to follow their own separate business ventures but the Ernie Els winery remains a proud testament to what can be achieved.

You will see in the picture Ernie's private tasting room as well as a temporary marquee on the front lawn! If you're visiting get yourself a driver and start at the top of the hill at Uva Mira with stunning views, then work down to Hidden Valley for a beautiful, fresh great value lunch. Then Ernie's, Guardian Peak and Rust en Vrede. Grangehurst is a five minute drive away directly behind Eikendal just off R44 and is a very small operation, but well worth a visit if you can manage it as their wines are something special.

Many wineries offer 2 different tasting selections - always opt for the premium tasting selection, it's usually only about 30 to 50 Rand (£3 to £4 for 5 wines!) and you get to taste some of their very limited wines which cost upward of £20 at the winery door, so they are great value! And if you buy a bottle you don't pay for the tasting!
 
 

Ernie Els Merlot 2012

Decanter Gold Medal, John Platter 4 Stars for 2010, Veritas Silver Medal for the 09

An excellent Merlot! They blend 8 different clones of Merlot, each of which adds slightly different characteristics to this wine which also receives some oak ageing to add body and complexity. It's deep ruby in colour with a nose of red fruits. Swirl it in the glass and the big legs sticking to the side of the glass tell you this is no lightweight! Intense flavours on the palate of both red and black fruits, sweet initially but beautifully balanced by the oak kicking in at the end. Again, like all his other wines, the overall balance of this wine is fantastic with cleansing acidity refreshing the palate.The finish is very long with silky vanilla flavours. There aren't many straight Merlots that I would usually buy as I like my wines to be big and powerful, and many Merlots can be fairly light - but not in this case. It's a full flavoured, powerful wine with body, complexity and style. Great wine.

Just 7 bottles of this vintage left.

Ernie Els Website

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Ernie Els Merlot 2012
 
 

Ernie Els Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

Tasting Notes

The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon boasts an inky blue black core and explosive purple rim. Extravagant salty-liquorice notes appear on the nose, intertwined with pine kernel, a dash of Madagascan pepper corn and lashes of blueberry fruit. The palate is medium to full-bodied with a firm acidity and supple yet lacy tannins. Elegantly modern with a somewhat towering structure, the wine finally finishes with a sweet fruit guise, a touch of mint and deft yet spicy oak.

Ageing Potential

Drink over the next 5 - 7 years.

Blend Information

100% Cabernet Sauvignon

In The Vineyard

The Vintage

The 2012 harvest is emerging as a particularly good one, both in terms of quality and volume. Although it’s still early days, we do foresee that this vintage has the potential to be of a very high standard. After fairly stable climatic conditions throughout the second semester of 2011, a cold and wet spring slowed down activity in the vineyards. We experienced warm weather in late December which led to some vigorous foliage growth. The bunch counts revealed an above average figure so “green harvesting” was needed in January. (Green harvesting is the removal of immature grape bunches for the purpose of decreasing yield and thus maintaining intensity on the remaining fruit.) It’s particularly pleasing to report that there was no apparent disease in the vineyards. Moderate to warm temperatures from the second half of February were prevalent as expected, but cool conditions throughout March slowed the ripening of the vines and assisted in improving phenolic ripeness of the grapes. There were some early rains during April but luckily 95% of the crop had already been harvested by this stage. In general, there is much excitement about the 2012 vintage, a specific characteristic being optimal ripeness levels achieved at lower sugars, thus in-turn resulting in lower alcohol levels.

About The Vineyard

The Cabernet Sauvignon vineyards grow on the warm north-facing slopes of the Helderberg region within the Stellenbosch appellation. The Hutton Clovelly soils contain a high gravel content which offers rich middle palate weight giving this wine exceptional depth and fruit purity. Five clones of Cabernet Sauvignon were utilized in the production of this wine with CS46C being our most abundant in clonal selection. With an altitude of approximately 250 metres above sea level together with the cooling influence of the Atlantic Ocean just 15 kilometres away, this extends the ripening period by up to 3 weeks resulting in lovely phenolic ripeness.

About The Harvest

The grapes were hand-picked in the cool of early morning. On the sorting table, all excess stalks and inferior berries were carefully removed.

Dates: March & April, 2012. 25.5° Brix average sugar at harvest

In The Cellar

Grape bunches were gently destalked with a Bucher de-stalker and lightly crushed. Fermentation took place in 7-ton, open-top stainless steel tanks with yeast WE 372 being added to the juice. The wines were pumped-over and punched-down manually 5 times per day ensuring maximum colour extraction from the skins. After primary fermentation the maceration period was 10 - 16 days before pressing. Each variety is maturated separately (micro-vinified) in oak barrels before blending and eventual bottling.

Cooperage: Aged for 17 months - 300 litre French oak barrels (20% new)

Production: 7 130 x 6 x 750ml cases

Sustainability Initiative: I.P.W. (Integrated Production of Wine) Certified

Sold out at the winery. We have just 19 bottles left.

Ernie Els Website

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Ernie Els Cabernet Sauvignon 2012
 
 

Ernie Els Proprietor's Syrah 2014

Text taken from Ernie Els website:

Tasting Notes

Tasting Notes

The Proprietors Syrah 2014 is a hedonistic expression, showing baked plums, bacon-fat and a hint of cinnamon.Sweetly fruited throughout, the mid-palate is elegant and yet powerful offering a contemporary, luxurious style with rich intensity and depth. Notes of peppered salami and goji berries are wound around fruit-laden tannins and well integrated oak. Irresistible now, time will offer more savoury complexity and silky length.

Ageing Potential

It will age well for 7 to 10 years.

Blend Information

95% Shiraz, 5% Viognier

In The Vineyard

The 2014 vintage

Initial vineyard growth was slow due to late cold fronts experienced during August 2013 followed by cool, wet weather at the start of the growing season leading to some challenges. Mid-November created challenging spraying conditions and limited access to the vineyards. As a result, downy mildew led to crop losses early on in the season in some of our red wine areas. Thereafter, favourable climatic conditions improved for flowering and good berry set ensued. The high rainfall in mid-November did however spark vigorous growth which required extra input to ensure superior grape quality and disease prevention through good canopy aeration and sunlight exposure. Widespread rainfall during early January increased pressure on viticulturists to prevent disease and rot. Ideal dry and moderate conditions reigned during ripening in January and mid-February after which a warm period accelerated ripening and resulted in great pressure on harvest intakes. The wine potential looks promising in terms of quality. Moderate weather conditions during the harvest season contributed to intense red wines.

About the vineyard

The Syrah vineyards grow on the warm north-facing slopes of the Helderberg region within the Stellenbosch appellation. The Hutton Clovelly soils contain a high gravel content which offers rich middle palate weight giving this wine exceptional depth and fruit purity. The Viognier was sourced from neighbouring Helderberg vineyards and was co-fermented during harvest. With an altitude of approximately 250 metres above sea level together with the cooling influence of the Atlantic Ocean just 15 kilometres away, this extends the ripening period by up to 3 weeks resulting in lovely phenolic ripeness.

About The Harvest

The grapes were hand-picked in the cool of early morning.

March & April, 2014. 25.5° Brix average sugar at harvest

In The Cellar

On the sorting table, all excess stalks and inferior berries were carefully removed. Grape bunches were gently destalked with a Bucher de-stalker and lightly crushed. Fermentation took place in 7-ton, open-top stainless steel tanks with yeast WE 372 being added to the juice. The wines were pumped-over and punched-down manually 5 times per day ensuring maximum colour extraction from the skins. After primary fermentation the maceration period was 10 - 16 days before pressing. Each variety is maturated separately (micro-vinified) in oak barrels before blending and eventual bottling.

Cooperage: Aged for 18 months – 70% in 300 litre French Oak barrels & 30% in 300 litre American Oak Barrels (50% New)

Production: 1 700 x 6 x 750ml cases

Sustainability Initiative: I.P.W. (Integrated Production of Wine) Certified

Ernie Els Website

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Ernie Els Proprietor's Syrah 2014
 
 

Ernie Els Proprietor's Blend 2014

Laurium Capital Signature Red Blends Awards: 91 Points

Tim Atkin 91 Points

Cabernet Sauvignon 60%, Shiraz 20%, Merlot 5%, Cabernet Franc 5%, Malbec 5%, Petit Verdot 5%

TASTING NOTES - from Ernie Els website:

"The distinctive Proprietors Blend is bold and invigorating from start to finish. This Bordeaux blend with the addition of Shiraz offers a balance of seamless structure and elegant generosity. Notes of sweet black and blueberry coulis dance on the nose, and with time, floral aromatics are coaxed from the glass. Medium to full bodied, the intense cherry-laced core finishes with a whiff of mint and dried provencal herbs. American and French oak is finely woven into the long finish, providing layers for further of aging potential over 10 years."

Ernie Els Website

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Ernie Els Proprietor's Blend 2014
 
 

Ernie Els Proprietor's Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

Top 100 SA Wines winner for Cabernet Sauvignon

Platter 4.5 Stars

Veritas Gold

Ernie Els website states:

"The 2012 Proprietor’s Cabernet Sauvignon is a perfect reflection of the phenomenal 2012 Stellenbosch vintage, a marriage of ripeness and elegance. The nose immediately dazzles with opulent cassis and red plums, while hints of mushroom, ripe fig and liquorice add complexity. The palate is braced by solid oak, which not only offers fragrant spice, but adds to a majestic deep and finely tannic structure. The dense fruit is lifted by a fresh cranberry edge which runs through to a luxuriously long and silky finish. A spectacular, brooding vintage that will benefit from long aging."

This vintage is sold out at the winery of course so last chance to get some. We have about 20 bottles left.

Ernie Els Website

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Ernie Els Proprietor's Cabernet Sauvignon 2012
 
 

Ernie Els Signature Blend 2012

Wine Spectator 93 Points

The highest rating vintage since 2005

James Molesworth of Wine Spectator said:

"a dark, alluring style, with gunpowder tea and warm ganache notes underscoring the core of steeped red and blackcurrant fruit. Features a singed cedar and alder frame, accented by a tobacco hint. Should open up nicely in the cellar. Best from 2017 through 2022."

Ernie Els Website

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Boekenhoutskloof image
 
 
Boekenhoutskloof is set in a stunning location at the top of Franschoek Valley. Franschoek itself is a small upmarket town lined with outdoor eateries, art galleries and prestigious wineries. It is a stunningly beautiful location and perhaps South Africa's premier wine region.

Boekenhoutskloof started in 1997 with just 5500 bottles for their first vintage. Today they produce about 4.5 million bottles each year. Much of this is their Wolftrap and Pocupine Ridge labels which are actually made at a larger more commercial winery. The original Boekenhoutskloof winery is reserved for their top wines, and they have purposefully retained it's character and integrity.

The views from the terrace are stunning. Their top wines are rated amongst some of South Africa's best. If you look carefully at the bottom right image you will see 3 small barrels - this is their "Journeyman" a top cuvee which is produced annually (only if the conditions are right to produce perfect fruit). It is not commercially available but is given to their best restaurant customers locally. We did get a case of 6 ourselves two years ago (we have a strong relationship with the biggest allocation of their premium wines in the UK) but seeing these barrels next to their other wines really put in perspective how rare this wine is!

You will also see the concrete "eggs" which is a very interesting way to ferment wine. Apparently the moon's gravational pull actually stirs the wine - like the movement of the tide!

And the middle photo is their Semillon vineyard so again you can see it's very small, hence their Semillon is produced in tiny amounts, particularly once the baboons have pinched half the grapes!
 
 

Boekenhoutskloof Syrah 2013 75cl

This wine needs no introduction. Mark Kent is one of South Africa's leading winemakers and his wines are very highly sought after.

Boekenhoutskloof Website



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Boekenhoutskloof Syrah 2013 75cl
 
 

Boekenhoutskloof The Chocolate Block 2014 75cl

Sadly the quality of this wine has been getting worse each vintage as Boekenhoutskloof are having to source grapes from ever further afield to keep up with demand. Much of the fruit now comes from Swartland.

We no longer feel this wine is value for money and there are so many better SA wines about for less money.

Boekenhoutskloof Website



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OUT OF STOCK

Boekenhoutskloof The Chocolate Block 2014 75cl
 
 
Graceland Vineyards

A small winery of 18 hectares backing onto the Heldeburg, owned and operated by Paul and Susan McNaughton with their children lending a hand in the cellar at busy times! They produce only a small quantity of red wines which are particularly good. They regularly score at least 4 stars from John Platter. Susan also packages them beautifully (Strawberry Fields may be a little unartistic but the others look great).

She adopted Raphael's famous painting of the "Three Graces" for the winery and this appears on each bottle, which also come elegantly wrapped in a 3/4 paper jacket sealed with the Graceland stamp. They make a lovely looking (and tasting) gift.

The picture is of two of their dogs, as Susan says "when the dogs start eating the grapes off the vine we know they're ready for picking".

Gracelands
 
 

Gracelands Merlot Stellenbosch 2008 75cl

Lovely wine - tasting notes to follow.

Gracelands Website



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Gracelands Merlot Stellenbosch 2008 75cl