Pinotage, red blends and pinot noir share the spotlight

This year’s Pinotage Report, Signature Red Blend Report and Pinot Noir Report, all convened by Winemag.co.za and sponsored by the multinational financial services company Prescient, have been published and make for some interesting reading.

There were 57 entries from 33 producers for the Pinotage Report and 33 rated 90-plus on the 100-point quality scale.

The 10 best wines overall are as follows:

B Vintners Liberté 2018

Beyerskloof Diesel 2018

De Grendel Amandelboord 2018

Kaapzicht Steytler 2018

La Cave 2018 (Wellington Wines)

L’Avenir Provenance 2017

Lievland Bushvine 2018

MAN Family Wines Bosstok 2018

Môreson The Widow Maker 2018

Painted Wolf Guillermo 2019

“Pinotage has a reputation for being a challenging variety and it has resulted in some quite rustic, inelegant wines in the past,” says Christian Eedes, chairman of the tasting panel and Winemag.co.za editor. “However, this was a very satisfying tasting with plenty of characterful wines on show. The variety seems to be benefiting from some particularly considered, imaginative work in both vineyard and cellar and there is a nice spread of styles emerging.”

To read the report in full, including key findings, tasting notes for the top wines, buyers guide and scores on the 100-point quality scale for all wines entered, just click on the link.

This year’s Signature Red Blend Report received 45 entries from 39 producers and 27 wines rated 90-plus on the 100-point quality scale.

The 10 best wines overall are as follows:

Boschendal Black Angus 2017

Boschendal Nicolas 2017

De Krans Tritonia Calitzdorp Blend 2017

Guardian Peak SMG 2017

Joostenberg Bakermat 2017       

Org de Rac Die Waghuis Red 2018

Org de Rac Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2019

Rust en Vrede Estate 2017

Tierhoek Grenache Syrah Mourvedre 2019

Warwick Three Cape Ladies 2017

“The purpose of the Signature Red Blend tasting is to explore to what an extent an authentically South African blend is emerging,” says Eedes. “It seems, however, that there is still a lot of experimentation going on with a very wide range of varieties and styles being used – that’s to be encouraged but it makes difficult to discern any meaningful trends.”

To read the report in full, including key findings, tasting notes for the top wines, buyers guide and scores on the 100-point quality scale for all wines entered, just click on the link.

“Purity of fruit and attention to detail ensures a bright future for Pinot Noir.” This year’s Pinot Noir Report had 30 entries from 24 producers and 17 wines rated 90-plus on the 100-point quality scale.

The 10 best wines overall are as follows:

De Grendel Op Die Berg 2018

Flying Cloud Sovereign of the Seas 2018

Iona Elgin Highlands 2018

Kershaw Elgin Clonal Selection 2018

Kruger Family Wines Elandskloof 2019

La Vierge Noir 2016

Lothian Vineyards Vineyard Selection 2019

Shannon Rockview Ridge 2018

Sutherland 2017

Tesselaarsdal 2019

Of the top 10, five are from Elgin, two from Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge and one each from Ceres Plateau, Elandskloof and Outeniqua.

“It’s a great result for Elgin. Vineyard plantings in this district may be small, but wine quality is generally of an extraordinarily high standard and the pinots in particular seem to be getting better and better,” says Eedes. “That said, the home of SA’s best pinot noir is surely still up for debate – it’s exciting to see relatively new areas such as Ceres Plateau and Outeniqua starting to feature.”

To read the report in full, including key findings, tasting notes for the top wines, buyers guide and scores on the 100-point quality scale for all wines entered, just click on the link.

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