Monthly Archives: March 2008
I had a chance to retry The Yard Shiraz again, and it is still a revelation. From the cool-climate of Western Australia, and with a modest 13.5% alcohol, The Yard has a core of rich Aussie Shiraz fruit, but with great complexity and nice acidity on the finish. I brought it home and it really [...]
We had lunch with the grower, Jan, and sat outside and drank slightly chilled bottles of the Primo 2004. This is the current vintage. It was very modern a delicious; a real crowd-pleaser. Not heavy, easy-drinking, smooth.
A few notes about the whites. All the Chardonnays are fantastic. Yes they have oak, but great balance and acidity. Probably my favorite Chardonnay in the world for under $20. I also really liked the Vineyard Selection Sauvignon Blanc; it is barrel fermented, which gives it a nice richness and takes the sharp edge (all [...]
This was the place I was most exciting about visiting and trying the wines. Marc Kent, the winemaker, is hilarious and candid. Porcupine Ridge Sauvignon Blanc: Nice; not at all green or vegetal. 12.5% alcohol. Best Sauv Blanc in South Africa for the money. Boekenhoutskloof Semillon 2005: From 40-100+ year old vines. Wonderful Chardonnay alternative. [...]
Sauvignon Blanc 2007: Mildly herbaceous; subtle, with nice acidity. All steel. Would be great ice cold. Chenin Blanc 2007: Good acid, nice midpalate and richness, especially for such an inexpensive wine. A touch of RS on the finish. Simply on of the best whites for the price (around $7); fantastic with Asian cuisine. Pinotage 2007: [...]
Dry farmed reds from the barren Swartland. Spice Route Mourvedre 2006: Wonderful nose; lots of blueberry. Tannic, rich, real Mourvedre character. Modern style. Spice Route Pinotage 2006: Clean and modern; no rubber/smoke. (This was probably bad winemaking and cellar management in South Africa; I had zero flawed wines, full of Brett, on this trip.) Spice [...]
Fairview Goats do Roam White 2007: kinda hot; reminds me of Tablas Creek White. Viognier/Grenache Blanc/Chenin Blanc Goats do Roam Rose 2008: Tank sample. Drawn off juice from reds, normally Pinotage/Grenache/Shiraz/Mourvedre Goats do Roam Red 2006: Mostly Shiraz with Pinotage. Aussie-style red with plump fruit. Goats In Villages Red 2006: Shiraz/Pinotage. Good and tannic. Pinotage [...]
Stellenbosch Syrah 2005: smoky, spicy, big fruit pop on finish Jonkershoek Twin Peaks Vineyards Syrah 2005: longer finish, more sappy/rich Jonkershoek Cabernet Sauvignon 2004: Softer than 2006; really benefits from bottle age. We had the 2001 Cab with lunch and it was great. I really think you need to lay down wines like these for [...]
Chardonnay 2007: The vintage produced wines that are “easy and open” and “mineral instead of fruit-driven.” The wine had lots of acidity and was oaky (but not insanely obstrusive). Low pH like Chablis; it is a “dry, austere, and mineral” wine. Chardonnay 2006: Less acidity, probably due to the extra year in bottle. Southern Right [...]
I am going to post my notes/thoughts from tastings at each of the wineries in South Africa I visited for the next few posts.