Category Archives: Platter 2013
Giorgio 2007, the Dalla Cia family’s 6th signature Bordeaux-style vintage, has been recognised as one of South Africa’s most outstanding red wines with a 5-star rating from Platter’s South African Wines 2013.
One of only three Bordeaux-style reds to receive Platter 5-stars this year, the highest rating from South Africa’s definitive wine guide, Giorgio 2007 is a consummate blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (70%), Cabernet Franc (20%) and Petit Verdot (10%).
Unlike earlier vintages, Merlot was excluded entirely from the blend: “We decided not to include Merlot as the addition of Petit Verdot in this particular vintage lends roundness and brings together the individual strengths and nuances of the other two components. It was unbelievable to see this effect while we were making up the final blend,” says George Dalla Cia, who heads up the marketing of this family landmark wine and grappa business in Stellenbosch.
“It’s a much fuller, austere and more complex wine, than our previous vintages,” adds his father and respected winemaker, Giorgio Dalla Cia, an early pioneer of South African Bordeaux-style wines.
The Dalla Cia family released their first Bordeaux-style red under the name Giorgio, a 2002 Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot Blend in 2005, 25 years after the release of Giorgio’s first highly acclaimed Bordeaux-style blend as winemaker at Meerlust.
Described in Platter’s South African Wines 2013 as a wine “built to last”, the Giorgio 2007 is a wine of immense concentration, finesse and balance. It shows ample complexity with hints of coffee, vanilla, tobacco leaf and spiced cedar wood on the nose and is smooth on the palate with a fine yet firm tannic structure, lending great elegance and longevity. The wine was matured for 18 months in 80% new and 20% second-fill French oak barrels. It is a wine that can be enjoyed now, preferably with a rich, meaty dish, but has good ageing potential to develop even further.
Known for their reverence for making wine in the true French tradition showing great respect for terroir and the inherent character of the cultivar, Giorgio and George have just released their very first Pinot Noir under the Dalla Cia name. Crafted from a single vineyard in the Polkadraai Hills region in a classically Burgundian style, the maiden Dalla Cia Pinot Noir 2011 teems with youthful black cherry, wild strawberry and blackcurrant with hints of musk and delicate smokiness. The mouthfeel is layered and velvety showing great complexity with a long, lingering aftertaste. The wine was matured for 12 months in 100% new French oak barrels after fermentation in open tanks. Only seven barrels, which equates to just 1 800 bottles, have been produced of this maiden vintage.
The Giorgio 2007 is available at boutique wine shops and fine dining establishments and sells at R210 per bottle at the cellar door, whilst the Pinot Noir 2011 is only available to private buyers or directly from the tasting room at Pane e Vino in Stellenbosch at R375 per bottle.
Both these wines are a must try this season and would make the perfect gift for the discerning wine lover.
For further information call the Dalla Cia Wine & Spirit Company at Tel: 021-888 4120 or visit www.dallacia.com.
Following hot on the heels of the Franschhoek Wine Valley’s string of accolades for 2012, Cape Chamonix, headed up by distinguished cellarmaster Gotfried Mocke, was awarded the prestigious title of Winery of the Year at the recent launch of the 2013 Platter’s Guide. The winery also garnered four 5 star ratings, the only producer to be awarded this many in the authoritative and internationally recognized wine guide, due for release later this month.
This sought after award is the editor’s personal selection after considering a variety of criteria, the aim being to showcase a producer who epitomises the best of South African winegrowing today. The award is influenced by the results of the 5 star tasting, and together with Cape Chamonix’s ever-improving performance, culminating in an exceptional four 5 star ratings, they were the obvious choice for 2013 Winery of Year.
Highly acclaimed winemaker, Mark Kent of Boekenhoutskloof was awarded the prestigious title in 2011, reaffirming the Franschhoek Wine Valley’s position as one of South Africa’s leading wine producing regions.
Joining Cape Chamonix in the 5 star line up, other producers from the Valley include:
Boschendal Cecil John Syrah Reserve 2010
Boschendal Chardonnay Reserve 2011
Cape Chamonix Chardonnay Reserve 2011
Cape Chamonix Greywacke 2010
Cape Chamonix Pinot Noir Reserve 2011
Cape Chamonix White Blend Reserve 2011
Graham Beck Pheasant’s Run 2012
La Motte Pierneef Shiraz-Viognier 2010
‘We’re extremely proud of our winemakers who continue to produce world-class quality wines. In doing so they keep Franschhoek top of mind as a preferred wine destination for local and foreign tourists,’ says Franschhoek Wine Valley CEO Jenny Prinsloo.
Platter’s 33rd edition features well over 900 South African wine producers, merchants and brands, including 54 new ones, and over 7,300 locally produced wines. The guide’s wine descriptions and star ratings, compiled in association with a team of leading wine experts, make it easy to find the right wine for any occasion, while the good-value indicators highlight those bottlings which are budget friendly across all quality levels.
KWV has again stepped into the spotlight in what has been a stellar year for the company, this time thanks to its Cathedral Cellar Chenin blanc 2011, which received a coveted five stars from the Platter’s Wine Guide this week.
The Chenin blanc was one of only a handful of wines in its category rated as “superlative” and “South African classics” for the Platter’s 2013 edition, which was launched in Cape Town. The guide, now in its 33rd year, is one of South Africa’s most authoritative wine guides.
The recognition for KWV follows on the heels of a string of significant awards collected by the Paarl-based producer, which include most recently its emergence as most successful producer at both the Old Mutual Wine Trophy Show and, for the second consecutive time, the Veritas Awards. In addition to the five stars awarded by the Platter’s panel of wine judges, the Cathedral Cellar Chenin blanc 2011 received a Gold medal at the Decanter International Wine Challenge this year.
Reflecting on South African Chenin blanc in general in her forward to Platter’s, Master of Wine Lynne Sherriff says it used to be regarded in the markets of the UK and Europe as “cheap and cheerful” wine. “How the times have changed! Thankfully some winemakers dedicated to Chenin…continued to strive for world-class wines. The results are irrefutable.”
KWV chief winemaker Richard Rowe says there is a distinct move to Chenin wines that are lower in alcohol, made with judicious use of oak, drier in style and free of phenolics. “With the Cathedral Cellar Chenin blanc and the others across our range – this is where we’re going. Ours is an elegant style that is meeting the quality demands of an international palate.”
He added that the wines were the result of keen stylistic awareness and finesse by the winemaking team in an environment of constant evolution. “Our objective is the production of premium wines that stand shoulder-to-shoulder with international counterparts,” he said.
The Cathedral Cellar at KWV’s cellar complex in Paarl officially opened in 1930, and has been home to Cathedral Cellar wines ever since. It was restored in 2005 with its barrel vaulted roof, stained-glass windows, has a granite and wood inlaid floor, providing the perfect conditions for the hand carved wooden vats on each side, to hold and mature Cathedral Cellar wines into the style of wine today.
The wine itself is a blend of three components, two of which were fermented in barrel. The first was fermented with an indigenous yeast strain to enhance the texture of the wine; the other inoculated with commercial yeast to ensure maximum cultivar-derived fruit flavours. Left on extended lees contact for 100 days after fermentation, the wine was then racked and placed back into barrel for maturation for another three months. The third component, making up 25% of the final blend, is a tank-fermented Chenin blanc. This was added to the blend to enhance freshness, minerality and overall complexity.
The result was a juicy wine that delivers aromas of apricot, limes and citrus on the nose. Mineral and chalky flavours linger on the palate, cascading into a fresh, zesty finish. The wine can be enjoyed immediately or cellared for a few years. Available from most specialist wine stores nationwide, the wine retails for approximately R90 per bottle.
Fleur du Cap has set a new 5-star record for its highly acclaimed Noble Late Harvest and secured a 5-star rating for the gallant signature red, Lazlo 2008, in the 2013 Platter’s South African Wine Guide.
Undeniably one of South Africa’s top dessert wines, the much lauded Fleur du Cap Noble Late Harvest has become the first wine to achieve Platter 5-stars for six consecutive vintages, high praise indeed from South Africa’s definitive wine guide.
Showing remarkable consistency, the latest Platter 5-star rating for Fleur du Cap’s Noble Late Harvest 2011, is a fitting climax of the 2012 wine awards season after the same vintage clinched a Gold Outstanding medal at the 2012 International Wine & Spirit Competition in London.
A gorgeous blend of Chenin blanc (76%), Sauvignon blanc (13%) and Chardonnay (11%), Fleur du Cap Noble Late Harvest 2011 shows beautiful aromas of raisins and marmalade with whiffs of typical dusty botrytis. Dried apricots and peaches meld with well-balanced acidity on the palate ending in a perfectly gorgeous aftertaste.
Made only in exceptional vintages, Fleur du Cap Laszlo 2008 is a fitting tribute to Dr Julius Laszlo, one of South Africa’s true wine pioneers and innovative Cellarmaster at Die Bergkelder in the 1980′s. This big, bold and gutsy blend comprising 35% Merlot, 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Petit Verdot, 11% Malbec is the culmination of extensive barrel selection and blending trials.
“2012 has been an exceptional year for Fleur du Cap’s white and red wines. Achieving 5-star ratings for 6 consecutive vintages of our Noble Late Harvest and our first for Lazlo is great news and just goes to show what can be achieved through team work,” says Andrea Freeborough, Cellarmaster at Die Bergkelder, who is supported by winemakers Pieter Badenhorst and Justin Corrans. Viticulturist Bennie Liebenberg ensures that the team enjoys the fruits of the finest vineyard sites.
Both the 5-star Fleur du Cap Noble Late Harvest 2011 and Laszlo 2008 will only be released in 2013. For more information visit www.fleurducap.co.za.
Simonsig Merindol Syrah 2010 clinched the coveted 5-star rating in the 2013 Platter’s South African Wine Guide, rewarding the innovative spirit of the Malan family wine dynasty in the heart of the Stellenbosch Winelands.
The latest release of Simonsig’s flagship impression of this Rhône varietal, the Merindol Syrah 2010 is one of 10 Shiraz wines to earn a 5-star rating in the 33rd edition of this definitive South African wine guide that features over 900 South African wine producers, merchants and brands and over 7,300 locally produced wines.
With its velvety texture, the fruit driven Simonsig Merindol Syrah 2010 also earned a Gold Medal at the 2012 Veritas Awards that took place earlier this year, carving a niche for Simonsig Shiraz in the South African market.
“It is very rewarding to be acknowledged as one of the country’s top ambassadors of this red wine variety, not by just one, but two authoritative groups of opinion leaders in the South Africa wine stakes,” says Simonsig Cellarmaster Johan Malan.
The name, Merindol, is taken from the Malan family coat of arms brought to South Africa by the French Huguenots and this exceptional single vineyard Shiraz is shaped by grapes of outstanding quality managed with meticulous care in the vineyards and Simonsig’s quintessential terroir.
With a cellaring potential of up to ten years, the Simonsig Merindol Syrah 2010 is the perfect accompaniment to pan-fried Kudu, stuffed quail and roast duck. The wine sells for R225 at the cellar door and can also be found at selected wine stores country wide.
Simonsig Wine Estate is located outside Stellenbosch, on the Kromme Rhee road between the R44 and R304.
It is said that every bottle of wine has a tale to tell, be it of a long-held wine dream turned into reality, an ailing vineyard nursed back to health, a crumbling cellar restored to former glory, or a visitor falling under the spell of the winelands. In its latest (2013) edition, due mid-November, the nation’s original and still favourite wine adviser, Platter’s Guide, tells the stories behind South Africa’s cellars, people and brands, and thereby places the romance of wine – ¬often missing from the picture – back into the foreground.
“Today much attention is focused on the nuts and bolts of wine, but rather less on the mystery, excitement and allure,” says Andrew McDowall, publisher of Platter’s Guide. “With our emphasis this edition on ‘backstories’, Platter’s is looking to showcase the passion, dreams, challenges and successes which not only form the backdrop to the wines featured in the guide, but also make South Africa one of the most fascinating and dynamic areas in the world of wine.
“The ‘backstories’ theme extends to the 2013 edition’s full-colour Photo Gallery, which has been re-imagined and superbly photographed by a young up-and-coming Capetonian, Teddy Sambu, mentored by local photographer and artist Athol Moult via the Imara Lightwarrior initiative. Teddy’s highly creative images cover both well-established producers like Sadie Family, Teddy Hall and Luddite, as well as newer names such as Ladera Artisan Wines, Amistad Wine Company and Osbloed Wines. The portraits are absolutely delightful, and the perfect visual expression of the ‘backstories’ idea.”
Platter’s 33rd edition, launched yesterday (30 October 2012), features well over 900 South African wine producers, merchants and brands, including 54 new ones, and over 7,300 locally produced wines.
The guide’s wine descriptions and star ratings, compiled in association with a team of leading wine experts, make it easy to find the right wine for any occasion, while the good-value indicators highlight those bottlings which are especially budget friendly across all quality levels.
Published in hardcopy and a variety of digital formats, Platter’s 2013 also packs extensive information on where to go and what to do in wine country. Dining, accommodation and cellardoor tasting options are covered in detail, along with many winery amenities, attractions and activities. GPS coordinates, easy-to-use maps and quick look-up tables provide invaluable help for visitors planning their own wineland rambles, while listings of specialised wine tour operators offer a variety of alternatives for those searching for a guided experience.
Fully updated notes on the major winegrowing regions, grape varieties, winemaking styles, winetasting terms, and the major wine competitions and awards, as well as listings of fine-wine stockists, wine shippers and wine educators country-wide complete the wide-ranging Platter’s offering.
The insightful and thought-provoking Foreword is by London-based Lynne Sherriff, qualified winemaker, award-winning wine consultant and Master of Wine.
A highlight of any new edition is the 5 star line-up – the exceptional bottlings which emerge from a second round of tasting with the judges’ highest rating on the Platter’s scale of 0 – 5 stars (“Somewhat less than ordinary” to “Superlative. A South African classic”). This edition a record 62 wines made the five star cut, with, remarkably, one producer (Cape Chamonix) garnering four 5 star ratings, three cellars (Fairview, Mullineux Family and Nederburg) each amassing three 5 stars, and a further six wineries (Boschendal, Fleur du Cap, Jordan, Raka, Sadie Family and Tokara) each raking in two 5 stars.
Twelve wineries received 5 star ratings for the first time, namely AA Badenhorst Family, Alheit, Bon Courage, Cederberg, Dalla Cia, David, Fryer’s Cove, Keets, Mvemve Raats, Nitida, Saronsberg and Von Ortloff. (The full list of five star wines appears below.)
Of the 5 star awarded wines, the red and white which receive the most votes from the judging panel are named Platter’s Wines of the Year. This time the Red Wine Of The Year is Mullineux Family Syrah 2010 (Wine of Origin Swartland), described in the guide as “an icon in the making”, whilst the White Wine Of The Year is Paul Cluver Noble Late Harvest 2011 (Wine of Origin Elgin), a botrytised riesling dessert wine noted as “a thing of beauty”.
In an ongoing focus on value for money, Platter’s identifies a number of entry-level wines which are exceptionally drinkable and well priced. The best of these, like the 5 star candidates, go into a second round of “blind” tasting (without sight of the label) to select the Superquaffer of the Year. For the first time since 2007, the ultra-easy sipper of the year is a red wine – Melck’s Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 by Muratie Estate (Wine of Origin Western Cape), noted in the guide as “a model of lively drinkability”, showing “a curvaceous smoothness”.
The names of the 11 other top quaffers appear in the new guide under the heading “Wines of the Year” along with the 62 five stars, 98 Highly Recommended wines (which missed five stars but are nonetheless extremely fine and collectable in their own right), and 134 reds and whites showing particular potential for cellaring (these ageworthy wines appear under the banner ‘Buy Now, Drink Later’).
Platter’s prestigious Winery of the Year award is the editor’s personal selection after considering a variety of criteria, the aim being to showcase a producer who epitomises the best of South African winegrowing today. “The award is influenced by the results of the 5 star tasting,” says editor Philip van Zyl, “and Cape Chamonix’s ever-improving performance, culminating in an exceptional four maximum ratings (out of five nominations) this edition, made them the obvious choice for 2013 Winery of the Year. On behalf of the guide, I’d like to congratulate cellarmaster Gottfried Mocke, owner Chris Hellinger and the team on an outstanding achievement.”
Platter’s 2013 print version is available from the second half of November at selected bookstores and retailers country-wide. The recommended retail price is R169.95. The book can also be ordered online from Platter’s website (www.wineonaplatter.com), Kalahari.com (www.kalahari.com) and SA Wines Online (www.sawinesonline.co.uk). The web-based version of the guide is available from today (30 October) at www.wineonaplatter.com, with Apps for Apple and Android devices, in conjunction with Wine-Oh!, available for download from www.wine-oh.info in the next few weeks.
Selection of numbered photographs with captions below:
The five star wines for 2013 are:
• Raka 2009
• Von Ortloff Quintessence 2008
• Warwick 2009
• Delaire Graff Laurence Graff Reserve 2009 Pinotage
• Cape Chamonix Greywacke 2010
• Kanonkop 2010
• Cape Chamonix Reserve 2011
• Newton Johnson Family Vineyards 2011
• Boschendal Cecil John Reserve 2010
• Cederberg CWG Auction Reserve Teen die Hoog 2010
• Delheim Vera Cruz 2009
• Fable Bobbejaan 2010
• Fairview Jakkalsfontein 2009
• Mullineux Family Schist 2010
• Mullineux Family Syrah 2010 (Red Wine of the Year)
• Raka Biography 2010
• Saronsberg 2010
• Simonsig Merindol Syrah 2010
• Dalla Cia Wine & Spirit Company Giorgio 2007
• Fleur de Cap Lazlo 2008
• Keets First Verse 2010
• Ken Forrester The Gypsy 2009
• La Motte Pierneef Shiraz-Viognier 2010
• Mvemve Raats MR De Compostella 2009
• Nico van der Merwe Mas Nicolas Cape 2007
• Sadie Family Columella 2010
• Boschendal Reserve 2011
• Cape Chamonix Reserve 2011
• Hamilton Russell 2011
• Jordan CWG Auction Reserve 2011
• Jordan Nine Yards 2011
• Alheit Cartology 2011
• Beaumont Hope Marguerite 2011
• Botanica 2011
• DeMorgenzon Reserve 2010
• Jean Daneel Signature 2011
• KWV Cathedral Cellar 2011
• Sadie Family Skurfberg 2011
• Spice Route 2011
• Fryer’s Cove 2011
• Graham Beck Pheasant’s Run 2012
• Tokara Walker Bay 2012
• AA Badenhorst Family 2010
• Cape Chamonix Reserve 2011
• Cape Point CWG Auction Reserve 2011
• David Aristargos 2011
• Fairview Nurok 2011
• Flagstone Treaty Tree Reserve 2010
• Miles Mossop Saskia 2011
• Nederburg Ingenuity 2011
• Nederburg Sauvignon Blanc-Semillon Private Bin D252 2012
• Nitida Coronata Integration 2011
• Rall 2011
• Tokara Director’s Reserve 2011
Méthode Cap Classique
• Bon Courage Jacques Bruére Brut Reserve 2008
• Villiera Monro Brut 2007
Dessert Wine Unfortified
• Fairview La Beryl Blanc 2011
• Fleur du Cap Noble Late Harvest 2011
• Mullineux Family Straw Wine 2011
• Nederburg Winemaster’s Reserve Noble Late Harvest 2011
• Paul Cluver Noble Late Harvest 2011 (White Wine of the Year)
• De Krans The Last Cape Vintage Reserve Port 2010
To date every vintage of Nederburg’s flagship blend Ingenuity White has earned a five-star rating in the Platter’s South African Wine Guide. The 2011 vintage featured in the 2013 edition, is the fifth in succession to do so. It joins two other five-star Nederburg wines in the latest guide.
They are the 2011 Winemaster’s Reserve Noble Late Harvest, the fourth consecutive vintage of the internationally acclaimed dessert wine to garner five stars, and the 2012 Private Bin D252, a partially barrel-fermented blend of Sauvignon blanc and Semillon, sourced from vineyards in Darling and Durbanville.
Private Bin wines are sold exclusively on the Nederburg Auction.
Like all its predecessors since the 2007 maiden vintage, the 2011 Ingenuity White is dominated by Sauvignon blanc. The other varietals to feature in the current eight-way blend are Semillon, Riesling, Chardonnay, Chenin blanc, Viognier, Gewürztraminer and Verdelho. Also partially wood-fermented, its appeal, says cellar master Razvan Macici, is that “it combines a creamy texture with a steely spine and a bounty of fruit and even floral characters. It’s such an interesting wine as it changes with every sip, revealing new layers. It’s also very food-friendly and a versatile partner to a range of dishes.”
He says that as far as he is aware, the blend includes more varietals than any other white made locally. “We try to be as innovative as possible with Ingenuity wines.”
Earlier this spring, Nederburg won an International Wine & Spirit Competition trophy for another of its Private Bin wines, the 2010 D234 Sauvignon Blanc, judged the best Sauvignon Blanc produced in the Southern Hemisphere. The cache of gold outstanding and gold medals at this event included a gold for the 2011 Winemaster’s Reserve Noble Late Harvest.
Nederburg was also one of the top Veritas performers at the SA National Wine Show, won a trio of trophies at the Decanter World Wine Awards in London and three double golds at the 2012 Five Nations Wine Challenge.
The De Krans The Last Cape Vintage Reserve Port 2010 was awarded a 5-star rating in the latest edition of the authoritative and internationally recognized 2013 Platter’s South African Wine Guide, due for release in November. This is the eight consecutive year that De Krans has been awarded a 5-star rating for its port wines.
This was the only 5-star rating awarded this year to a port/fortified wine. Sixty-two wines were awarded the prestigious rating out of more than 7 300 wines rated in this year’s guide.
What makes this award so much more significant is that the 2010 will be the last Cape Vintage Reserve with the word ‘Port’ on the label as this was bottled and labelled towards the end of last year just prior to the deadline of 31 December 2012 agreed by our government and the EU on using the word ‘Port’.
2010 proved to be an excellent year, potentially one of the great years of the De Krans Cape Vintage Reserve Port. Brothers and winemaking team, Boets and Stroebel Nel, were able to bottle a handful of magnums of this vintage which they believe will become sought after collector’s items.
This flagship port is best described as having a vibrant plum colour, with dense aromas of prune, spice and tobacco, and has the potential to mature for a further 20 to 30 years. A fleshy, chewy mouthful of flavours, showing tannic grip, concentrated red fruit nuances, and a firm structure ensuring considerable longevity. Retailing for approximately R250 per bottle, savour this premium port on its own, or serve with stronger cheeses.
This 5-star rating follows in the footsteps of the De Krans Espresso awarded the RX South Africa Trophy for the Most Innovative Wine in 2012, at the 2012 Michelangelo International Wine Awards, as well as De Krans winning the South African Champion Port at this year’s SA Young Wine Show, reaffirming De Krans’ position as one of South Africa’s premier port producers.
‘We are thrilled by this latest recognition for our Last Port, which further establishes us as one of the front runners within the port industry in South Africa,” says Boets Nel.
For more information on these or any other ports and wines in the De Krans range, feel free to visit their website at www.dekrans.co.za, or contact Helet Viljoen or Bessie Barnardo at the farm on 044 213 3314 or firstname.lastname@example.org.