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Wines of South Africa
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SOUTH AFRICAN WINES ONLINE
Most of South Africa's vineyards are located at the bottom within the Western and Northern Cape regions of the country and being influenced by both the Atlantic and Indian oceans. The popular white grapes grown depending on whether its high and cool or low and hot are Chenin Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc. The favoured reds would be Cinsaut, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Shiraz and its own claim to fame the Pinotage.
Alexander Hadleigh Wine Merchants, Southampton, Hampshire, UK hold stocks of South African red, white and rose wines, especially wines produced in the following top eight defined wine regions:
STELLENBOSCH……….is the second oldest South African wine region after Constantia. The near-by ocean keeps the summer temperatures just above that of Bordeaux and the soils are perfect for growing the red wine grapes of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Shiraz and Pinotage. There are three white wine grapes that do well in this area, Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay.
PAARL……….some say Paarl is the only wine region in South Africa that can successfully grow every grape variety grown in the whole of South Africa. A big boast, but the mix of fertile mineral rich soils, low lying plains, high valleys, variable temperatures all support this probability. Certainly no one grape is King and no one wine producer is leader of the pack. The sheer diversity of wine styles champion crispy whites similar to the Loire right through to big luscious dessert wines, the reds follow a similar pattern from the light fruity Beaujolais styles right through to big deep Rhone style wines.
DURBANVILLE………..has an excellent reputation for producing top quality red wines and classic style Sancerre type white wines. The grapes are grown on granite based soils principally on the slopes of the Tygerberg Hills, combined with cooling breezes in the summer all helping to produce premium quality wines.
OLIFANTS RIVER VALLEY…………a hot scorching river valley landscape surrounded by the Gifberg mountain range produced enormous quantities of wine, most for blending and every day drinking and a little from small parcels of land closer to the hills will match the best of South Africa.
FRANSCHHOKE…………is an area with higher elevation vineyards which favour white wines such as Chardonnay and Semillon, the wines produced are fruity, well balanced with good acidity. More recently some areas have given way to red wine production, particularly Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and on the cooler slopes much success is being experienced with Pinot Noir.
ROBERTSTON…………is located in the picturesque Breede River Valley greater wine region, close to the river itself. The best white wines come from the Chardonnay grape and for the reds, Shiraz is tops by a long way. Also, the area over many years has built up a reputation for good quality dessert wines and fortified wines.
SWARTLAND……….a well established wine growing area ideally located close to the Atlantic west coast, historically known for bulk wine production, but now has a reputation for big full bodied red wines and fine quality fortified wines. Also worth noting are white wines from Chenin Blanc and Sauvignon Blanc, which thrive in the Kasteelberg and Perdeberg mountain region where cooler temperatures are a key factor.
WALKER BAY………..is located in the cooler climate region east of Cape Town along the Indian Ocean coast. A region that has witnessed great expansion over the last thirty years, with many growers copying the cool climate varietals and styles of Europe.
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Jordan Estate Inspector Peringuey provides a contemporary and deliciously mouth-filling experience of white pear, quince and green pineapple interlaced with a spicy complexity.
Klein Constantia Estate Riesling is vibrant in appearance with an aromatic and complex nose. The palate has a delicate floral and fruity entry which is balanced by a well balanced acidity. Full-bodied with a creamy mouthfeel, the wine tapers into a refreshing and long fruit driven finish.
Merlot Barton Vineyards Walker Bay, is a dense purple colour, on the nose blackberry and dark cherry aromas with a dash of Mocha. On the palate it has outstanding freshness of rich ripe fruit with good underlying acidity and soft tannins followed by a long lingering aftertaste ,
Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon Barton Vineyards Walker Bay in South Africa has concentrated berries and white pepper spiciness on the nose, palate shows dark and juicy fruit with a wooded characteristic, elegant but delicate tannin structured finish. Aged for 16 months in French Oak barrels.
Jordan Estate The Outlier Sauvignon Blanc is characterised by a barrel-fermented dimension which adds additional depth and complexity whilst retaining the linear qualities associated with grapes planted on south-east facing aspects. A dense portrayal of sun-kissed tropical fruits, a true ‘outlier’.
Julien Schaal Mountain Vineyards Chardonnay features lime and grapefruit which underpin what appears to be a serious, brooding wine. This is followed by sweet melon, sweet and sour plums and tout saline acidity.
Fairview Paarl \"La Beryl Blanc\" has intense tropical fruit followed by delicate noted of soft spice and hints of jasmine blossom on the nose. Lychee and tropical fruit linger on the palate. The mouth feel is rich and fruity yet well balanced, with refreshing acidity.
Post House Stamp of Chenin offers a nose of peach, citrus and liquorice. Rich and full bodied palate with delicate flavours of tropical fruit, orange and minerals. Soft round entry finishing with a long and full mouth feel. A hint of sweetness.
Klein Constantia Cap Classique Brut has a nose that displays fresh minerality and flinty expressive notes with buttery brioche characters, followed by a slight green apple and citrus aroma. The palate is focused and defined with a mineral backbone and a fine mousse.
Medium to full bodied dry red with complexity and finesse
Syrah The Prospector from Jordan Winery has a complex concentration of flavours, dense rich dark chocolate, black fruit laced with flavours of white pepper and spice, toasty nuances, barrel aged,
Jordan Estate Black Magic Merlot uses part whole-berry fermentation and softer pump-overs to extract aromas of red plums and dark bitter chocolate. French oak maturation seasons the wine to accentuate the seductive flavours and generous velvety tannins.
Jordan Reserve Mellifera Noble Late Harvest Riesling, 37.5cl is delicate and floral with a ripe apricot and spring blossom bouquet and the well-balanced acidity adds elegance to the long, rich finish.
Jordan Estate The Long Fuse Cabernet Sauvignon features fully developed flavours and soft ripe tannins without compensating the tension and elegance captured from the various cabernet slopes. Here especially, the climate plays a significant role to allow great fruit expression and classic essences of cedar, brambles and toasted tobacco.
Cape Chamonix Chardonnay shows bright straw yellow colours with golden highlights and ample aromas in scents that recall tropical fruits and grapefruit, mingling with hints of oatmeal, caramel and nutmeg. Medium-bodied with richly complex flavours of fruit. The wine is balanced and supported by a touch of light oak, carrying through tilt to the last sip.
Cape Chamonix Cabernet Franc shows a deep ruby mulberry colour and intense bouquet with scents reminiscent of bell pepper, red berries, spice and cigar box. A wine of ample structure fills the mouth with concentrated fruit and berry sensations.
Cape Chamonix Feldspar Pinot Noir has a bright red colour. The bouquet is complex with scents recalling wild berries, spice, sour cherries and violets. On the palate the wine shows medium body with fruit flavours balanced elegantly with tannins in a long finish
Tokara Reserve Collection Sauvignon Blanc displays a vibrant deep straw colour with flecks of green. The aromas on the nose are a melange ripe tropical fruits such as guava, papaya and passion fruit intermingled with the more herbaceous aromas indicative of a cooler climate Sauvignon blanc such as asparagus, nettles and fresh cut grass. The palate the wine is surprisingly full and rich with mouth filling flavours reminiscent of the character on the nose.
Cape Chamonix Greywacke Pinotage has a deep garnet red colour with tinges of dark violet when young. The bouquet is complex with scents recalling wild berries, spice and cherries. On the palate the wine shows full body and rich dark chocolate bitles extract with fruit flavours balanced elegantly by tannins with a long and lingering finish that reveals a sweetness reminiscent of liquorice.