Advent Calendar #10 2018…

Gabrielskloof Magdalena 2016, a wine in Advent Calendar #10 2018

Peter Allan Finlayson of the talented eponymous wine family is the winemaker at Gabrielskloof which is just east of Bot River on the N2. The Gabrielskloof Magdalena 2016 is his take on a South African White Bordeaux Blend. Made of a blend of 41% Sémillon which was sourced from low-yielding old vines in Franschhoek estimated to be 34 years old. Sémillon adds texture and gravitas to the sprightly young vine Sauvignon Blanc, harvested on Gabrielskloof, which is in the Bot River Wine Appellation. The vines are 13 years old and planted on south-facing slopes with a combination of Table Mountain Sandstone and Bokkeveld Shale soils. The cool maritime climate of the farm results in naturally lower yields – typically six tons per hectare.

After whole bunch pressing and fermentation using the natural yeasts from the vineyards, both the wines were separately vinified in 400 litre and 500 litre French oak barrels. Ten months was spent on the lees. The wines were then blended and prepared for bottling.

Peter Allan Finlayson in the Cellar

From a Burgundy shaped bottle under screw cap. The label, it is part of the Gabrielskloof Landscape Series is a black and white illustration of the view from the Estate. In the glass, the wine is a gem bright light straw. The aromas are of blackcurrant [we must remember that the Sauvignon Blanc is a parent of Cabernet Sauvignon], orange flower water and nut caramel. The mouthfeel is generous and rounded, the fruit well interwoven with the oak and its concomitant spices in a long and gently waning aftertaste. This is a wine that will last if cool cellared and will reward you handsomely in years to come.

This is a serious sipper as an aperitif before a meal, or leading into a meal which might start with a smoked fish paté, you can use snoek or angelfish. In Australia, I used hote smoked Tasmanian Salmon sides. Click here for my recipe.

Read more about Gabrielskloof Wines – CLICK HERE

The Garajeest Bruce Cabernet Franc, a wine in Advent Calendar #10 2018

The list of wines earned by Callan Williams of Garajeest Wines  goes on and on and rightfully so. This winemaker, has gone stratospheric in a very short time. Callan makes authentic wine, wine of great character with all the best characteristics of the variety she uses. They are driven by the variety and the terroir in which the grapes are harvested. Callan applies minimal intervention in the cellar.

Bruce is an honest Cabernet Franc, a parent of Cabernet Sauvignon. I was blown away by this wine, it was love, well, at first whiff. Let alone taste, and aftertaste. It is simpy a stunner and I am thrilled to tell you about it in my Advent Calendar #10 2018.

Callan Williams, pouring a glass of her white wine, Jim

From a Burgundy shaped bottle, closed under natural cork. The label has won label design awards for its magnificent quirky fonty labels. Adds so much to the expectation. In the glass a glorious dark bloodplum at the heart which pales out to ruby at the edges. Aromas are classical Cabernet Franc. A generosity of dark berry fruits, mulberries and roadside brambles. The palate is weighty, rich layers swirling around the mid palate and into the long aftertaste. A truly great glass of wine.

My Bobotie, my grandmother’s spoons

Do chill this wine for about 30 minutes in an ice bucket before serving. It’s made for food and will happily tackle my Bobotie. Click here for my recipe.

Click to read more about The Garajeest, Callan Williams & her wines –  CLICK HERE


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