De Grendel Elim Shiraz 2017 tops Winemag 2019 Shiraz Report with outstanding 95 points!

De Grendel’s unique cool-climate Elim Shiraz 2017, in only its second vintage, claimed victory as the best wine overall in the inaugural Shiraz Report. Scoring an “outstanding” 95 points, the De Grendel Elim Shiraz 2017 was praised by the judges as “intense but not weighty, admirable for both its focus and elegance”.

“A very primary nose with berries, pepper and some smoky reduction to the fore. The palate has lovely fruit concentration, zippy acidity and crunchy tannins,” the three-person panel led by editor Christian Eedes concluded.

De Grendel cellar master Charles Hopkins said the 95-point top score for the wine was a remarkable testimony to the potential he saw more than 20 years ago in the unique cool-climate terroir around the tiny village close to Africa’s southern tip at Cape Agulhas.

“There are few areas in South Africa that can produce the rare and sought-after rotundone style found in our Elim Shiraz – with its incredibly alluring, fragrant and intense black pepper and herbal notes – and Elim is the most consistent. The judges recognised the unique style and quality of this wine, which is drinking beautifully now and has exceptional maturation potential,” Hopkins said.

Hopkins considers the Elim Shiraz his personal pride and joy, and it is bottled as a limited release of 1 500 1,5 litre magnums and available exclusively to De Grendel Loyalty Club members at R695 from the estate or via the De Grendel online shop.

The “exceptional and near-perfect conditions” of the 2017 vintage, considered one of South Africa’s best-ever, lead Hopkins to believe the 2017 Elim Shiraz will perform even better than its 2016 predecessor, which was awarded a Michelangelo double gold and Veritas gold, placed in the Top 12 SA Shiraz Challenge, received 4,5 stars in the 2019 Platter’s guide and 91 points from wine critics Tim Atkin and James Suckling.

The delicate black pepper and notes of lavender, violets and rosemary, with a full-bodied, rich and juicy palate, make the Elim Shiraz 2017 an ideal partner to rich meat dishes with herbal, savoury or spicy flavours, such as roasted Karoo lamb, gorgonzola cheeseburgers or fillet steak with creamy brandy and peppercorn sauce.

The inaugural Shiraz Report 2019 saw 83 wines from 67 producers “blind” tasted and scored on the 100-point scale by a three-person panel. The report is available on

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