2007 was the first vintage made by Pinotage (& Chenin) guru Francois Naude under his own label. Working as a consultant after retiring from L'Avenir Francois buys barrels of the best wines from wineries he's been working with in order to blend them into a premium Pinotage, although no variety name appears on the labels.
The wine is sold in an original manner, at an annual auction over dinner at a secret location. It's so secret that Francois himself doesn't know where the car that takes guests and him to the dinner is going. The inaugrual auction was held at the Observatory in Cape Town with food by Chef Bruce Robertson. Each subsquent auction has been at a different venue.
The events were organised by Francois' wife and after her sad demise their daughter Melissa is in charge.
Seven barrels for this 2007 vintage came from Delheim, Hartenberg, Lanzerac (2 barrels), L' Avenir (2 barrels) and Neil Ellis, all located in the Stellenbosch appellation.
On opening the cork was dry and broke and the plug left in the bottle crumbled, eventually falling into the wine.
This was a perfect, gorgeous wine, but starting to show signs of age. I do not doubt itwill keep for longer but if I had more bottles (which I don't) I'd open them sooner rather than later to get the fruity flavours while they are still there.
Francois told me "bottle differences will become more evident and although some will age even further, it is a good time to start enjoying them now; rather sooner than later.
A fact sheet for this wine is here.