Boschendal, that beautiful Manor House in the Groot Drakenstein Valley, has a long history stretching back to before the arrival of the French Huguenots to our shores after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685. Jean le Long, a pre-Huguenot, was granted the first ownership of Boschendal, Wood and Vale. Nicolas de Lanoy was a later owner and it is for him that this fine wine has been named. The Boschendal Nicolas 2016.
Nicolas was made in the years of the worst drought in living memory. The grapes for the blend of the Nicolas are Shiraz [58%], Petit Verdot [14%], Cabernet Sauvignon [10%], Malbec [8%], Merlot [7%] and Cabernet Franc [3%]. The Cabernet Sauvignon and the Petit Verdot give the wine its Bordeaux-like structure, while the Malbec and the Merlot give forth their vibrant fruit, with the former adding depth of colour. And of course, the Shiraz adding its wonderful plummy spice. Upon arrival at the cellar, bunches are carefully hand sorted to ensure that any green or damaged berries are removed. The different varieties are vinified separately and treated very gently throughout the winemaking process to obtain the wine’s signature classical elegance. Alcoholic and malolactic fermentation take place in stainless steel tanks. The wines are then taken for 16 months to French oak barrels. Of these 20% were new barrels and the remainder a combination of second, third and fourth fill barrels. Once matured the wines are tasted and the best of the bunch go into the final blend before being prepared for bottling.
From a Bordeaux shaped bottle embossed with a crest just below the neck. The label is simple and elegant, gold printing on black. In the glass, the wine is a deep bloodplum red at the heart which pales out to ruby at the edges. The aromas and flavours flow from one to the other. Brilliant essence of roadside brambles, mulberries, and spiced plums. There are creamy dark cherries in undertow with creamy dark chocolate. The tannins and acidity are so beautifully interwoven with the fabulous fruit in the mid-palate and also into a silken, long and gently lingering aftertaste. While the Boschendal Nicolas 2016 is eminently drinkable now, a couple of years of cool cellaring will reward you.
A wonderful wine like the Boschendal Nicolas 2016 is perfect for the traditional Sunday Roast Beef Lunch with crisp Yorkshire Puddings and rustly roast potatoes and real gravy. It will honour any midweek supper dish if you’ve had a hard day and just want a great bottle to go with a well-cooked supper. With the hunting season upon us, Meeta K Wolff’s Ramen Bowl with Sesame Poppy Seed, Venison and Ginger Chili Kale & Swede makes a warming bowl for an Autumn night. Click HERE for her recipe.
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