South Africa

Desc

Items 1-10 of 31

View as List Grid
per page
  1. De Wetshof Estate Chardonnay Bon Vallon Robertson 2018
    WS92
    $14.98
    Availability:In Stock
    A flash of matchstick gives way quickly to a bright core of green and yellow apple flavors laced liberally with honeysuckle and verbena notes through the nicely detailed finish. Very, very solid. Drink now through 2021. - Wine Spectator Learn More
  2. Klein Constantia Vin de Constance 2014 500ml
    VM94
    $84.98
    Availability:In Stock
    94 Points!  The bouquet bursts from the glass with marmalade, honeysuckle, orange rind and tropical fruit, all beautifully defined, if perhaps just a little waxier than I recall. The lively, viscous palate presents layers of fresh apricot, honey and orange zest, leading to a precise, vibrant finish. I love the chutzpah of this Vin de Constance, and though it will age, I do not begrudge anyone drinking it now.
    Learn More
  3. Klein Constantia Sauvignon Blanc 2017
    WS90
    JS90
    $17.98
    Availability:In Stock
    90 Points!  A sauvignon blanc with pretty density and undertones of attractive dried peaches and light oranges. Medium body and a fresh finish. - JamesSuckling.com
    Learn More
  4. Kanonkop Estate Pinotage Stellenbosch 2016
    WS92
    $36.98
    Availability:In Stock
    92 Points!  Sleek and refined, especially for the grape, with a sanguine thread weaving around a core of gently steeped black currant, cherry and plum fruit flavors. Alluring black tea details and a dash of singed alder check in on the finish. Needs a little cellaring. - Wine Spectator
    Learn More
  5. Simonsig Kaapse Vonkel Brut 2016
    VM90
    $14.98
    Availability:In Stock
    90 Points!  The 2016 Kaapse Vonkel saw a portion of the Chardonnay fermented in old French oak barrels. It carries off the slight oxidative style quite well, offering walnut and chalky nuts and an emerging touch of dried orange peel. The palate is fresh and crisp with a fine bead of acidity, hints of peach and clementine toward the finish, and rosewater on the aftertaste.
     
    Learn More
  6. Simonsig Chenin Blanc Stellenbosch 2018
    $9.98
    Availability:Out of Stock
    South Africa has been an interesting proposition winewise.  Starting to export in the 90s after the apartheid was lifted, the political stigma and rather parochial styles of most of the wines made it difficult to get any traction for the category in this marketplace.  Now that we are about a quarter century into the ‘program’, we and they have learned a few things.  The styles of many of the wines have become more international in an attempt to create better market penetration.  A lot of those wines are competitive internationally, but it is fair to say that a good many of them are not memorable.
     
    With a few exceptions, most of South Africa’s best efforts are uniquely South African.  Among the most notable are the work of folks like Erin Sadie and some dynamic new white blends from an emerging cadre of open minded, creative newcomers.  But the grape that seems to achieve the highest expression as a varietal is...Chenin Blanc. 
     
    Typically the vines are old, with deep roots extracting distinctive character from the unique vineyard sites, tremendous infused minerality and crackling, mouth-watering acidity.  This is not the sweet, quaffable stuff that permeated the American market in the 70s, sort of a precursor to the white Zin era.  In fact the best examples of South African Chenin can hold their own with the produce from the ‘motherland’ of the Loire Valley.  Which is better?  That’s not a sweeping debate but rather comes down to the individual comparison being made. 
     
    Huet or Chidane versus Sadie Family or Alheit?  Fantastic comparison on the quality front though the acidity is a bit more driving in the South African wines.  Frankly, for the most part, although the best of the Loire ‘giants’ are expensive these days, the best SA versions typically cost more.  Advantage Loire.  On the value end of the spectrum, however, we have seen things come out of South Africa that are downright unbelievable, and we have recently come across one of the most remarkable examples of South African Chenin Blanc we have ever tasted for this kind of price.
     
    Simonsig was among the first wave of wineries that came over here when South Africa was permitted to enter this market.  We tasted a number of wines over the years but mostly reds.  We can assure you we never had their Chenin or it would have been a staple.  Apparently, Simonsig Chenin Blanc was the first wine released by founder Frans Malan in 1968 and this particular bottling marks their 50th Anniversary harvest. 
     
    For a wine that is going to sell for this kind of price, it is given the royal treatment in the vineyard with all hand harvesting from 30-40 year old bush vines and cool, controlled fermentation.   In the glass, a honey/peach aroma makes its presence felt right out of the gate. The flavor aromas of crunchy ripe kiwi and green melon jump out of the glass. The palate is crisp and fresh with Granny Smith apples and sweet tropical limes all sitting atop of driving acidity.  The Simonsig Chenin Blanc Stellenbosch 2018 is what Chenin is supposed to be, with broad, bright honeyed toast, peach, and subtle minerality all as part of the presentation, but with the kid of cut that makes it all quite vibrant.
     
    Full and round up fruit, and so easy to sip, this has the kind of riveting acidity that makes an impression and makes the mouth water.  A complete effort with sizzling character, a little punch of berries and lemon s underneath and mouth watering snap to the finish.  You can drink this with lighter fare or on its own as an amazing aperitif.  Normally with most wines we’d roll out some sort of reviews, but wines like this doesn’t get the kind of respect they deserve and this one wasn’t reviewed anywhere we saw. 
     
    Like we said, we don’t recall ever tasting past incarnations of this effort from Simonsig, but this is one is one of the best Chenins we have had at any price in terms of its verve and, certainly among the best value white wines we hve had period.  At $10, it’s downright silly.  Over the years one of our value, go-to Chenins was Mann (also from South Africa), but this one is better.  In fact we have tasted few others this compelling at any price.
     
    Learn More
  7. Lismore Chardonnay Reserve 2017
    VM95
    $44.98
    Availability:In Stock
    95 Points!  The 2017 Estate Reserve Chardonnay was matured in 500-liter barrels using 40% new oak. It has quite a powerful bouquet of crushed stone, yellow stone fruit, jasmine and light walnut aromas that are very well defined, although it clearly needs a couple of years to absorb the oak. The palate is very precise on the entry, displaying notes of orange zest (veering toward blood orange), quince and nectarine. This has wonderful acidity and great build in the mouth toward a very impressive, almost Corton-Charlemagne-like finish. This will be outstanding once it reaches the peak of maturity.
     
    Learn More
  8. Lismore Viognier Age of Grace 2017
    VM93
    $29.98
    Availability:In Stock
    93 Points!  The 2017 Age of Grace comes from purchased Viognier fruit from Elgin grown on rose quartz soil. It has a well defined bouquet of yellow plum, mirabelle, apricot blossom and subtle popcorn aromas. The palate is clean and precise with a fine line of acidity, hints of stem ginger complementing the tropical fruit (passion fruit and peach skin), and the finish is spicy and quite persistent. Excellent.
     
    Learn More
  9. De Wetshof Estate Chardonnay Lesca Robertson 2017
    WS93
    $17.98
    Availability:In Stock
    93 Points! Very enticing, with creamy green and yellow apple, pear and melon flavors laced with verbena and honeysuckle notes, kissed elegantly by a sweetened butter hint through the finish. This is why people love Chardonnay. Drink now through 2021. - James Molesworth, Wine Spectator
    Learn More
Desc

Items 1-10 of 31

View as List Grid
per page
To Top