Finding great wine and sharing it with others is a passion of mine. Living in the Cape I know that I am fortunate to have access to so many amazing local Wines. However, this can make choosing which wine to try next a daunting task. Hence the reason for me sharing a few Top Local Wines That You Need To Try.
Top Local Wines That You Need To Try
Each wine featured includes tasting notes, food pairing ideas, as well as the price point. While I generally prefer red wine, a good quality white never goes amiss! For this reason, My Top Local Wines include a selection of both white and red wines.
Stellenzicht 2018 Thunderstone Red
Tasting notes: The Thunderstone Red, a take on the traditional Helderberg blend, consists of Cinsault, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon. You can expect a wine with a delicate perfume and complex aromatics and red berry fruits and cherries. The medium-bodied palate is brimming with freshness and juicy red fruits. Hints of sweet spice and lacy tannins give this wine a soft finish.
Food pairing: I enjoyed the Thunderstone Red with a Creamy Tomato Soup. It will also pair well with red meat or a delicious pasta dish.
Price and Availability: The Thunderstone Red sells for R165/bottle. It is available directly from the winery, selected retail outlets or online.
Boland Cellar One Formation Chenin Blanc
Tasting Notes: The One Formation Chenin is a crisp and intensely flavoured wine, with layers of lime and tropical fruit, as well as green melon and pear. Extended time on the lees delivers a rich, creamy element, giving the wine complexity, which lingers on the finish. The wine is elegant and well-balanced with complex fruit structure and freshness.
Food pairing: While the most obvious choice with this wine would be poultry or seafood dishes, I also love Chenin Blanc with a mild to medium spiced curry.
Price and Availability: The Chenin Blanc sells for R98/bottle. It is available directly from the winery, selected retail outlets or online.
One Formation Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Grenache Blanc
Tasting notes: This gently wooded wine shows layers of green apple with kiwi fruit aromas. Ripe pear and melon flavours, as well as green pepper notes, are evident on the palate. The finish is gentle and lingering. Old bush-vines of the Chenin Blanc grapes yield ripe, creamy stone fruit flavours. These are complemented by the crisp green fruit of the Sauvignon Blanc. The addition of Grenache Blanc in this blend provides richness and texture with ripe pear flavours.
Food Pairing: Finely flavoured dishes of seafood and poultry will complement this unique blended wine.
Price and Availability: The Boland Cellar One Formation Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Grenache Blanc Blend sells for R98/bottle. It is available directly from the winery, selected retail outlets or online.
De Krans Basket Press Cabernet Sauvignon
Tasting notes: The 2019 De Krans Basket Press Cabernet Sauvignon is an elegant wine delivering wonderful ripe berry and cedar aromas, with a hint of spice, cassis and dark fruit on the palate.
Food pairing: I paired the Cabernet with my Ultimate Beef Stew recipe, and it was a marriage made in heaven!
Price and Availability: The Basket Press Cabernet Sauvignon sells for R70/bottle. It is available directly from the winery, selected retail outlets or online.
Stellenbosch Hills 1707 White Reserve
Tasting notes: The 1707 White Reserve is a limited edition white wine blend with a pale, straw-yellow hue. It is a Chardonnay-driven blend, with portions of Semillon and Viognier. The wine has a fragrant nose, with generous stone fruit, citrus and buttery vanilla on the palate. “The palate is full-bodied with zesty acidity, a concentrated mid-palate and juicy tannins,” says Winemaker James Ochse.
Food Pairing: If you are looking for an elegant, full-bodied, white wine to impress your dinner guests, The 1707 White Reserve will definitely do the job. The richness of the wine makes it an excellent accompaniment to sushi, seafood curries, mussel soup, risotto and cream-based dishes.
Price and Availability: The 1707 White Reserve sells for R135/bottle. It is available directly from the winery, selected retail outlets or online.
Quoin Rock Chardonnay 2018
Tasting notes: The Quoin Rock Chardonnay is a beautiful straw colour with a hint of green, alluding to its youthfulness and vibrancy. “The attractive nose showcases ripe citrus and orange peel aromas which carry through to hints of vanilla spice oak and toasted brioche.” ~ winemaker Schalk Opperman. Citrus peel on the palate adds good weight and a light buttery texture. The end result is a well-balanced wine with fresh acid and minerality. The persistent lemon-lime flavours linger on the finish.
Food pairing: This well-balanced Chardonnay drinks beautifully on its own. It also pairs well with seafood dishes such as salmon or shellfish pasta. I would also happily serve it with a soft creamy cheese such as Brie or Camembert.
Price and Availability: The Quoin Rock Chardonnay sells for R400/bottle. It is available directly from the winery, selected retail outlets or online.
Middelvlei Free-run Pinotage
Tasting notes: The Middelvlei Pinotage is made from 100% free-run juice. Free-run juice naturally drains off from a bulk of freshly crushed grapes, which ultimately results in free-run wine. It is a medium-bodied wine with gentle tannins. The wine presents generous fruit aromas with elegant oak spices. Ripe dark fruit flavours are balanced by creamy vanilla, which lingers on the palate.
Food pairing: The Middelvlei Pinotage will pair really well with Italian dishes such as a lamb ragout or an Aubergine Parmigiana. In my opinion, Pinotage stands up well to spicy food. For instance, my Lamb Rogan Josh Curry was the ideal winter pairing.
Price and Availability: The Middelvlei Free-run Pinotage sells for R150/bottle. It is available directly from the winery, selected retail outlets or online.
Middelvlei Unoaked Chardonnay 2020.
Tasting Notes: The Middelvlei Unoaked Chardonnay is currently one of my favourite “easy drinking” white wines. While I love a wooded Chardonnay this wine is slightly lighter, with hints of minerality and well-integrated acidity. As the wine opens up an abundance of typical citrus, peach fruit flavours, and hints of spice come to the fore. The refreshing mouthfeel holds the promise of a lingering aftertaste, resulting in a crisp wine with an appealing freshness.
Food Pairing: The Middelvlei Unoaked Chardonnay 2020 is perfect on its own, however, it pairs equally well with seafood dishes. I recently enjoyed it with a lightly spiced mussel dish.
Price and Availability: The Middelvlei Unoaked Chardonnay sells for R110/bottle. It is available directly from the winery, selected retail outlets or online.
Top Local Wines – Tried & Tasted
I hope you have enjoyed my list of Top Local Wines and the food pairings I have shared. Above all, remember to have fun and do not be scared to try new wines. Please check out a few more of my recipes if you are looking for dinner party inspiration.
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