Wine Club June 2013

Vineyards in Paarl, South Africa

South African wine is older than the nation of South Africa: one of the first tasks the settlers of Cape Town undertook in 1652 was the planting of grape vines, and the first vintage was harvested in 1659. The Dutch were attempting to prevent scurvy, not create world class wines, and the influx of French Huguenots in the late 1600’s improved wine quality drastically. Into the 1800’s South Africa exported very little wine, but as a result of the napoleonic wars, and the British hunger for wine, planting increased 4-fold and wine production increased nearly 10-fold in the first half of the century. Despite the phloxera epidemic ravaging vineyards in the last years of the 1800s yields were high enough by 1910 that vintners were suffering a “wine lake” effect much like that currently plaguing European growers. The creation in 1913 of Ko-operatieve Wijnbouwers Vereniging van Zuid-Afrika Beperkt (South African Winemakers co-operative society)  helped deal with the wine glut (some vintners were literally dumping wine into rivers) by encouraging the production of brandy and the planting of lower yielding varietals. This co-op would come to dominate South African wine production through the end of apartheid, when the overall increase in wine exports allowed smaller un-affiliated growers to successfully challenge their dominance of the international market. The end of apartheid wrought many changes in South African wines, and we’re still seeing the effects of them two decades later: a focus on quality over quantity, the planting of many new varietals, and greater interaction with the international wine community are just a few of the salutary changes that resulted


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Ken Forrester Renegade Red

Posted by on 1:33 pm in Wine Club June 2013 | Comments Off

45% Shiraz, 44% Grenache, 11% Mourvedre This elegant Rhone style blend displays old world style and new world fruit. Hints of Grenache’s earthy rusticity and Shiraz’s noble spice shine through with notes of nutmeg and salty, savory, black olive on the finish. Overall it is balanced with soft, well integrated,...

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Kanonkop Kadette

Posted by on 1:31 pm in Wine Club June 2013 | Comments Off

57% Pinotage, 26% Cabernet Sauvignon 14% Merlot 3% Cabernet Franc   This wine possesses a deep, ruby red color. It shows ripe raspberries, black currant and mocha aromas on the nose; and dark chocolate and blackberry fruit on the palate. This wine has good length with a dry finish and can mature for a further 7-8...

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Raats Old Vine Chenin Blanc

Posted by on 1:28 pm in Wine Club June 2013 | Comments Off

  Honeyed pear/ginger and citrus flavors complemented by a firm minerality and spicy edge. The grapes sourced from old vines from three vineyards and is characterized by their complex soils. It is rich and intense, yet elegant and delicate on the palate. This wine is truly a delight.

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