Thursday, 31 March 2011

Around the World in 80 Wines with Wines of South Africa

The South African High Commission in Trafalgar Square was the venue for last weeks Wines of South Africa’s, around the world in 80 wines tasting. As you can see from the picture below it was a fantastic venue that almost felt like you were going back in time! On show were 152 wines, covering all the main grape varieties and blends which is easier to say what wasn’t in them, than what was, and one I’d never even heard of, Bukettraube.

Their were some fantastic wines on show, here are some of my favourites from the day;

Pongrácz Brut Rosé NV – This sparkling had a salmon pink colour with aromas and flavours of red berries, combine this with a refreshing level of acidity and a good length of flavour, it went on to produce a well balanced wine, especially for £8.99, available from SA Wines Online.

Lomond Estate Sauvignon Blanc, Cape Agulhas, 2010 – This is a blend of 85% Sauvignon Blanc and 15% Nouvelle, with an almost water white colour and aromas of melons, figs and hints of grass coming through. On the palate you got the aromas coming through with a touch of minerality thrown in for good measure. Combine these with a good level of acidity and a reasonable length; you get a beautiful and complex wine all for £9.99, available from Forth Wines Ltd.

Spier Private Collection Chenin Blanc, Western Cape, 2009 – A blend of 95% Chenin Blanc and 5% Viognier giving you pronounced aromas and flavours of stone and tropical fruit, a touch of cedar then came through from the oak vinification. It had a good level of acidity and a long length of flavour, you also got a very full, rich mouth feel again from the oaking. This was a wonderfully rich and full on wine with great fruit flavours and complexity, which is what you’d expect for £18.49; available from Henderson wines and SA Wines Online.

Springfield ‘The Work of Time’, Robertson, 2004 – This is a blend of 45% Cabernet Franc, 29% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot and 2% Petit Verdot which is just amazing. You got wonderful jammy flavours of dark fruit with a high level of ripe tannins and a good level of acidity, which produced a well balanced wine that would go beautifully with a Sunday roast, this wine could also age for quite a few more years yet as well. Excellent value for £14; available from Bibendum Wine.

Southern Right Pinotage, Hemel-en-Aarde Valley, Hermaus, 2008 – 100% Pinotage, which can be a difficult grape, they are either fantastic or absolutely horrendous, this one was the latter. It had an opaque ruby colour with breathtaking aromas and flavours of jammy berries with a touch of spice coming through from the background. Combined skilfully with a good level of fine tannin and you got an amazingly complex and delightful wine all for £11.99, which is just amazing; available from Waitrose.

Lourensford Noble Late Harvest Semillon, Stellenbosch, 2009 – Produced from 100% Semillon, they hand pick the Botrytised bunches which are then lightly pressed and barrel fermented. The wine had a deep golden colour which was lusciously sweet with flavours of honey and apricots, on the nose you also got the distinctive botrytis aromas. This was a stunning sweet wine that I could have sipped away at for hours; available from SA Wines Online, Taurus Wines, Well Wine W4 and for £8.99.

It was a fantastic tasting and there were many more great wines on show, these are just a few that really caught my eye, hope you enjoy them as I did.

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