31 May 2019

WoTM - Stoneboat Solo Pinotage 2007

My Wine of The Month for May is Stoneboat Vineyards 'Solo'2007. This is a selection of the best five barrels of Stoneboat's already excellent Pinotage. 

Stoneboat is located at the southern end of Okanagen Valley, in British Columbia,  near the border with the USA which is geographically part of the Sonoran desert. 

It's sandy soil, so the vines grow on their own roots. Sometimes winters are so harsh that a vine is killed, but as they are on their own roots, rather than grafted, a new shoot soon appears and the vine regrows. 

Cold winters also means that Stoneboat are the only winery to have made a Pinotage ice-wine. According to VQA rules, grapes for ice-wine can  be picked only after three consecutive 24 hour days with temperatures below -8 Celcius. 

The cork on this wine crumbled and I was lucky to get it all out of the bottle.

The wine was  showing its age, with subdued tannins but offering  pure red cherry flavours. A delight.

Read about my trip to Stoneboat in 2011 here.

21 May 2019

LIWF and Reverie Pinotage 2015

To the London International Wine Fair, where I found dapper Johan Krige pouring his full range of Kanonkop wines, including the delicious ten year old 2009 Pinotage. 
David Sonnenberg (owner Diemersfontein) and Dann de Jongh (winemaker at Contantia Uitsig)

David Sonnenberg of Diemersfontein poured his coffee Pinotage, the sleek Reserve Carpe Diem and – new to me – Harlequin Shiraz-Pinotage blend.

Harlequin showed how Shiraz and Pinotage make such a complementary pairing.

Also new to me was Reverie Pinotage 2015. This is the label of Jacques de Klerk whose day job is winemaker at Radford Dale. Up to now Reverie has solely focused on Chenin, a variety loved by Jacques so much his email and Twitter handle are Chenin. This was his first Reverie Pinotage and it was made by the carbonic maceration, a technique most commonly found in Beaujolais.

The wine was fresh, light bodied and pale coloured and I could see the Beaujolais connection; a nice luncheon wine

It’s probably not coincidence, but Radford Dale’s ‘Winery of Good Hope’ label also produce a carbonic maceration Pinotage and one of the vineyards they use the grape from is in Voor Paardeberg.