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The vineyards for Fidèle Soleilla are perched high in the dramatic hills and terraces above the Vallée d’Agly with a unique character of its own. The famed black schist is interspersed with pockets of limestone from the higher slopes, combining the richness and power that is typical of Maury with a fresher, more finely defined character.
Honeysuckle and apricot aromas and a rich, almost unctuous palate that is somehow still dry, tangy and refreshing.
Casas Relvas is a family run winery in the Alentejo region of Portugal, started in 1997 by Alexandre Relvas who saw in Herdade de São Miguel the vast horizons of his roots in Africa. The family’s passion for the region has extended to the rebuilding of cork oak forests.
Expressive ripe fruits, very versatile and can stand up to strong dishes such as smoked haddock.
Wildehurst Wines is a boutique winery in Swartland producing two ranges of wines with minimal intervention winemaking techniques. The Velo range is easy drinking and fruit forward. This white is full of peach and nectarine aromas and tropical fruit flavours with fresha acidity and a touch of elegance.
Echeverria is a winery in Chile’s oldest wine regions, Curicó Valley. With a view for sustainability, the vines are even irrigated by the melting snow off the Andes Mountains. Winemaker Roberto Echeverría Jr is inspired by his French heritage and so focuses on producing wines from French varietals in his own style of blending New World innovation with Old World elegance. The 80 year old cellar also houses a museum which holds many relics of winemaking including a French grape press from the 1930’s.
‘No es Pituko’ is Chilean slang for ‘it ain’t fancy’ reflecting the fact that this wine was vinified naturally, without any additions at any stage. Vibrant aromas of peach and tropical fruits are layered with buttery notes and balanced by a refreshing natural acidity.
Clothes maketh not the man; judge the wines on what’s in the bottle, not by means of preconceived ideas. Aromas of candied lemon, cooked apple and mango with a core of minerality. Soft and voluptuous, it has a lovely ripeness and a fleshy, creamy mouthfeel, which leads to a perfect tangy freshness giving some zip to its otherwise mellow feel.
Winemaker Thierry Haberer has been making wines around the world for over a decade. He has spent time working in Bordeaux and Napa Valley in the USA before settling at the Holden Manz Wine Estate in Franschhoek Valley, one of South Africa’s premiere winemaking regions. The estate boasts 22 hectares of exclusively red grape varieties; Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Syrah.
The grapes for this white blend (40% Viognier, 40% Chardonnay and 20% Chenin Blanc) were hand selected from a variety of locations in Somerset West, Stellenbosch, Wellington and Paarl. They combine magnificently to produce a beautifully rounded, full bodied and well balanced wine. A bright, flinty nose with lime, green apples, tangerine and honeysuckle. The wine has had 12 month’s lees contact, adding creaminess and complexity. Absolutely sublime.
We love this wine with seared tuna steaks, tempura prawns with sweet chilli dipping sauce and mushroom wellington.
Keermont Estate may well take the prize for most beautiful vineyards and views in all of South Africa. And yup, there’s some pretty stiff competition! Nestled in a natural amphitheatre between the Stellenbosch and Helderberg mountains, their ambition is to produce wines that reflect the natural wonders of this exquisite place.
61% Chenin Blanc, 13% Sauvignon Blanc, 23% Chardonnay and 3% Viognier, with the backbone of the Chenin blanc from a 40 year old, unirrigated vineyard called ‘Riverside’. One of the great things about Keermont is that they never rush to release their wines, so it’s developed some nicely waxy notes, pear tarte tatin, butterscotch and honeysuckle, macadamia nuts with a herbal, both sweet meadow and fresh green herb palate and long, tangy finish.