(2019) All five Bordeaux grapes, led by 53% Cabernet Sauvignon and 20% Petit Verdot. 24 months in French oak - with 5% American. Slightly resinous note on the nose, spicy, a touch of lift - peppery - and has a ripeness and juiciness, not just black fruit, but a bit of Summer pudding sweetness and nice plush tannins, finishing on good acids. Stockist and price at time of review is for an earlier vintage.
(2019) This is made from Chenin, Muscat, Sauvignon, Rasa deCotnari (a Romanian variety) and has 220g/l of residual sugar, so a full-on dessert style. Big honey and toast nose, nutty seeds and an intense lime marmalade. So luscious, pineapple and mango, very thick in texture, lots of lime cordial sweetness, richness, and a good acid balance here, just a warming creaminess, but a lovely little wine. Price per half bottle.
(2019) Clairette, Chenin, Verdeho, Palamino. Named after a professor who wired Pieter up to brain and skin sensors to measure sub-conscious reactions as he tasted scores of barrel samples. They came back with his ‘ideal’ wine based on the readings. Seeds and nuts and loads of zesty lemon and apple, but dry and salty too, that saline character, a sour tanginess that is mouth-watering. Just lovely.
(2019) Grenache, Pinot Noir and Cinsault mainly sourced from Swartland and Elgin. Aromatic with savoury leather and a touch of truffle and morel mushroom, lovely dark fruit and succulence, a touch of chocolate in the finish. Yes, the name means 'family murder', from a case of seriously mistaken scenario that made headlines in the local press, when Pieter 'buried' his young son in a freshly dug sandpit, but neighbouring children spotted and reported a 'crime scene' leading to a massive police response.
(2019) This wine spent 12 months in 300 and 500-litre French oak barrels, 10% new. The fruit comes from Stellebosch and Paarl, and the main component is Syrah (53%), the oldest is 25-year-old bush vine Cinsault (19%). It is meaty and has a touch of cool climate herbaceous lift, pepper, spice and a bright overall picture. Lovely texture and ripe succulent damson and berries. The finish is rich with tobacco and spice, but such a solid fruit concentration.
(2019) Durbanville and Stellenbosch fruit, vines aged between 35-55 Years. Eight months in French, older barrels. Creamy and waxy lanolin notes, the palate full textured and leesy, rich, a lovely fat lemon acidity and fine lime leaf and floral notes flitting about as it develops. Lovely.
(2019) Durbanville, Stellenbosch and Swartland are the sources for this Chenin, with an average vineyard age 42. Old 500-litre barrels and wild yeasts for fermentation. Dry, lightly nutty and citrussy, the palate super dry with pithy dry acidity, lemon and buttery toffee, but fresh citrus into a seamless, long finish.
(2019) Chenin, Semillon, Sauvignon, part of the Chenin Blanc and the Semillon were fermented in new French Oak. Ian says "13 years after bottling, this wine has finally entered its ideal drinking window." Delicious creaminess and the Sauvignon (only 9%) not too green, giving this lovely ripeness and rich texture.
(2019) From the Western Cape, this at first looks like another cutely commercial SB to please the masses, its label festooned with jokey cartoon sheep. And while the wine is indeed a crowd-pleaser, it's also cleverly made with partial skin contact and around 30% fermented in 500-litre French oak casks, to give a little more weight, texture and ultimate interest than many at this price point. An undertow of toast and nutty aromatics to the bright citrus fruit, the palate with a bit of real concentration and salty character adding to the sense of freshness and length. The name and those sheep? Apparently a herd of wandering sheep did some early-morning leaf thinning as they munched their way through the vineyards.
(2018) Partner to the newly-introduced Chardonnay, and also bottled with the innovative twist off cork, this is a very nicely-pitched Sauvignon, showing both grassy, herbal zing and a ripe fruit profile. Touches of lychee and mago give an exotic flair, and the acidity balances that ripe fruit nicely into the finish.