03 February 2007

Weedy Pinotage?

I have heard all sorts of criticism of Pinotage, but I have never before heard it described as 'weedy'. However, Gordon Stimmel writing in the Toronto Daily Star says "And shiraz is becoming a hallmark high-quality red, which will, I hope, replace the still too weedy Pinotage (a crossing of pinot noir and cinsaut grape vines) that has for too long been the dominant signature red grape of South Africa."

But he does find one expression of the variety he likes - "Delheim 2006 Pinotage Rosé ($12.95, 87) with its gentle rose petals, lime peel, cranapple and strawberry stylings."

Mike Tipping, in The Press (York, England) admits that "South Africa's pinotage grape is not everyone's cup of tea, but I like it. Beyerskloof Pinotage 2005 (Sainsbury's £5.99, 18/20) is astonishingly good for the price. It's spiky stuff, with smoky oak, brambles, chocolate and aniseed."

No weediness there, nor in this match for haggis as the anonymous 'Wine Seller' in Scotlands Daily Record reports: "The Bay Pinotage 2003 (South Africa) £5.99 - Coop. This is from Hamilton Russell Estate, one of South Africa's best wineries. It's big with dark, spicy, smoky fruit and sweet oak notes to balance. This needs food and is a perfect match for haggis."

I am off now to open a 2001 Hidden Valley Pinotage. It is one of the Pinotages stocked in the Ontario Monopoly store LCBO where it costs what looks like a very reasonable $22.95 (£9.85) - I recall Hidden Valley costing £16.95 in Sainsbury's several years ago. Not that I have seen it anywhere on the shelves recently.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous02:46

    With all due respect, I think that his comments are nonsense. Pinotage is South Africa's signature red wine, and an authentically South African crossing. Shiraz is so mainstream as to be boring, frankly. I cannot get excited by SA Shiraz. Pinotage, on the other hand, is a unique wine with a unique flavour profile. Enough conformity already, I say.