28 February 2015

WoTM _ Rijk's Private Cellar 2008 Pinotage

My Wine of The Month for February is Rijk’s Private Cellar 2008 Pinotage. Rijk’s – pronounced ‘rakes’ – was created by the Dorrington family in the Tulbagh valley and named in honour of Rijk Tulbagh, governor of the Cape from 1751 to 1771, who gave his name to the town and valley. Rijk’s wines achieved almost instant success from their first bottling in 2000.

This grapes for this wine were handpicked at night at the beginning of February, then underwent 48 hours cold maceration at 10° C, prior to fermentation and underwent malolactic fermentation in barrel where it was allowed to mature for 20 months in 60% French and 40% American oak barrels,  50% new, 40% 2nd fill and 10% 3rd. It was bottled in September 2010 and released in March 2012 after 18 months bottle aging.

The wine is a beautiful bright cherry red colour. It’s tight in the mouth, but opens up with time. Rijk’s website recommends the wine be decanted for 1 hour before consumption. This is good advice, which I wish I’d had taken. It’s a powerful and elegant wine, with restrained fruit flavours and a structural tannin core. I don’t think I’ve ever had a Rijk’s wine that didn’t delight, and the only disappointment with this wine is that this was my last bottle of this vintage.

This wine was a Pinotage Top 10 winner in 2012, and won  Pinotage Trophies at Michelangelo,  Old Mutual, and International Wine & Spirits Competitions 

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