29 August 2007

Raka Pinotage 2003

Raka's 2003 Quinary blend, so named because it contains all five Bordeaux varieties, really impressed everyone at the tasting I gave last week.

So I thought I'd open my only bottle of Raka Pinotage -- also from the 2003 vintage. This was a winner in the 2004 Top 10 Competition for which I must take some credit because I was one of the judges that year.

Blackberries in a glass was the initial nose and taste. The wine was pale for a Pinotage and it was very soft. I wondered if it was because the grapes all came from such young vines. Raka was only established in 2002 way down the coast from Hermanus, inland from Stanford in an area so new that the Wine & Spirit Board had to create a new ward -- Klein River -- just for them and thus their vineyards are recently planted.

Attractive as the wine was to begin with, with blackberries and red cherry flavours, as time went on a very dry and woody finish became apparent. Maybe bottle variation, but this wine was not as delightfully fruity as it was in April last year when I last drank it. This is a now a wine that requires food, and I think it should be drunk sooner than later.

Alc: 13.5%
WO: WO Klein River
Drink: now

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