(2022) In an unusual square bottle, fruit comes from Franschhoek and higher altitude slopes in Darling. There's grassiness and a pea-shoot pungency to this, a little elderflower and suggestion of smoky mango fruit. In the mouth the wine has good texture and lots of concentration, the fruit intense in flavour but with a nettle-like piquancy too. It's a bold and assertive style of Sauvignon, though the final balance of acid and fruit is very good, giving an extended finish.
(2021) Whole-bunch pressed and then eight months in French oak barrels, this has a subtle oatmeal creaminess, crush almond and ripe but reserved white fruits. In the mouth a really nicely pitched and balanced Chardonnay, a tang of citrus to fruit and acidity, broadening slightly on the mid-palate into peachier tones, but tightening up again on the dry but zesty, lingering finish.
(2019) Always one of my favourite wines in the Boetenhoutskloof portfolio, this is old vines, from three of the four oldest Semillon vineyards in Franschhoek - one dating from 1902 and planted on its own roots, another from 1936 and the third from 1942. A little bit of 1902 Muscat de Frontignan is blended in. Lovely lanolin, butter and lightly toffeed nose, with the wild yeast and oxidative handling giving much more breads and toasty character. Lots of lemon fruit and acidity to sharpen, such a long, savoury and concentrated finish. Gottfried suggests decanting this before serving.
(2019) What a treat to taste this 13-year-old example, with such a beautiful golden colour, with spice having developed, more orange and citrus, lemon balm, nutty with seeds and flint, and that searing lemon zestiness. This wine ages so well.
(2019) Around 10% Cabernet Franc in this blend, with barrel ferment components and aged in 100% new wood. A little more perfume here, still that herbaceous note of leafy herbs, less obviously plush blackcurrant, with a lithe, sinewy character, feels like a lithe, silky and refined wine, a little more austere arguably, but has that finesse to the tannins, that less obvious plushness, and is a hugely satisfying wine.
(2019) This is botrytis-affected Semillon, aged in barrel, with 180g/l of residual sugar. It spends 30 months in new French oak and is picked from the vineyard in front of the Franschhoek winery. Lovely toast and marmalade, there is toffee and barley sugar, a hint of mint, the fruit has an exotic fruitiness, with pineapple and bold tangerine juicy acidity, full texture and delicious length. Price for a half bottle.
(2019) Only 5.5g/l dosage here, and 60% Pinot Noir with a little Meunier too, an assemblage of red and white base wines. Delicate pale salmon pink, again a refined, small bubble mousse. There’s a delicate red berry fruitiness, with quite a pronounced yeastiness too. The palate is dry with a lemon and pink grapefruit tang, a little sherbet, raspberry tartness which, along with the low dosage, gives a savoury finish. Excellent, and again has good structure.
(2019) Only 3%g/l sugar here, so technically Extra Brut. The blend is 80% Chardonnay, mostly barrel-fermented, with 20% Pinot Noir. Deeper colour, much more leesy, deep, meatier character. The disgorgement in June 2018, so over six years on the lees, plus the barrel fermentation, has allowed that lovely development of tertiary aromas and flavours, a little bruised fruit, a hint of orange, and good toast. Again the palate retains all the freshness and the lemon and lime bite of acidity.
Cabernet Sauvignon 38%, Syrah 35%, Merlot 27% is the blend for this wine from Franschhoek, matured 10 months in 3rd-fill French oak barrels. Its a deep and plummy style, the merlot perhaps dominating the aromatics, but there's a cherry, even lightly minty and floral lift too. In the mouth a flood of chocolaty blueberry and blackcurrant fruit is pretty much a 'fruit bomb', but it is allied to some good tannin weight and balanced cherry acids to give this a bright and appealing character too.
(2017) A rosé from Franschhoek in South Africa, which blends Bordeaux varieties and Syrah, and 10% of which was fermented in French oak barriques. The colour is a pale-to-medium salmon pink, and there's a bold, dry, small red berry fruitiness that leads on to quite a grippy, authoratitive palate for a rosé, concentrated and with a bit of grip and tannin to offset the soft berry flavours and cleansing acidity. A good gastronomic pink for salmon or paella perhaps.