Thursdays 27th August & 3rd September 2020
This tasting runs over two sessions, from 7pm – 8pm each evening. The ticket price of £25 covers both sessions and is per household, not per person. We’ll open three wines each night, but they’ll drink just as well over the next couple of days so nothing will be wasted. You are also welcome to attend without buying the accompanying wines.
South Africa is one of the most exciting wine countries on the planet. Emerging from apartheid only 25 years ago, the wine industry embraced the opportunity with zeal. The decades since have been extraordnarily dynamic in the Western Cape as new vineyards were planted, ancient vines were rediscovered in forgotten corners and switched-on young winemakers entered the scene. We’re focusing on the quality, artisan scene over the two weeks, as you will learn the story through some of South Africa’s most exciting producers and six premium wines.
One of Tom’s specialist areas of interest having toured the Cape winelands ten times over the past 20 years, he will be our expert guide. Swartland, for example, is a remote corner of the Cape where ancient unirrigated bush vines have survived in the hot, dry climate to yield naturally concentrated wines. We’ll taste the Mullineux Kloof Rhône Blend from superstars of Swartland, Chris and Andrea Mullineux, currently South African winery of the year.
Moving even further north from Swartland, Piekenierskloof may well be an unfamiliar name, but it is one everyone in South Africa is talking about, a mountainous area of old bush vines, from which ace Swartland winemaker Donovan Rall makes our next wine, the Tea Leaf Chenin Blanc.
The Underworld Grenache Blanc also uses Piekenierskloof fruit, blended with old, bush vine Grenache Blanc from Paarl. Partly barrel fermented with wild yeasts, it’s another great example of unheralded old vine material now being put firmly in the spotlight.
Waterkloof Circle of Life Red comes from a more traditional area around Stellenbosch, but certainly qualifies for our ‘new wave’ theme: certified as organic and biodynamic, vineyards are ploughed by horse, ferments are with wild yeasts and a low-intervention philosophy permeates the operation. This unusual blend is Syrah, Petit Verdot and Merlot, and it’s a beauty.
A scoop for this tasting is being able to include the very limited release of Anysbos Grenache from fantastic young winemaker, Marelise Niemann. I met Marelise on my last visit to the Cape, tasting her super-impressive boutique wines from the on-trend Botrivier wine region. Never heard of it? It’s now home to some of the best cult labels of the Cape. This maiden release of Marelise’s wine scored 95/100 from Master of Wine, Greg Sherwood.
Finally, the Method Cap Classique (or MCC) traditional method sparkling wines of the Cape are a well-kept secret. Charles Fox Reserve Brut is a blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier from the ultra-cool (in more ways than one) Elgin region, aged for over two years on the lees. A simply sensational wine, made by Champenoise Nicolet Follet.
This tasting is split into two sessions on 27th August & 3rd September, from 7pm - 8pm. Ticket price covers both sessions and is per household, not per person. You are welcome to attend without buying the accompanying wines.
Please note: it is now too late to guarantee delivery of this case in time for the first session of this two-part tasting on 27th August. Part two is one week later, 3rd September.
This premium selection of fine wines is drawn from the extensive South African portfolio of independent wine merchant, WoodWinters. To buy these six bottles will cost you £98.50 plus £6.95 delivery, but we have negotiated a special price for this tasting: buy using the button below for £95 including UK mainland delivery – a saving of £10.45.
Charles Fox, Brut Reserve. £21.50
The Underworld, Grenache Blanc 2018. £11.50
Strange Kompanjie, The Tea Leaf Chenin 2018. £13
Waterkloof, Circle of Life Red 2015. £12.50
Mullineux, Kloof Swartland Rouge 2018. £16
Anysbos, Grenache 2016. £24