Tierhoek is a farm of beauty and diversity. Situated high in the peaks of the Piekenierskloof Mountain, just on the border of the Cederberg, the farm is in the Piekenierskloof Wine Appellation. The farm and its products flourishes due to cold, rainy winters and long, warm summers that are cooled down by afternoon Atlantic breezes which come off the icy waters of the Benguela Current.
The Grenache Noir is from a single 60 year old block that is on well drained, decomposed sandstone. The bush vines are unirrigated and organically farmed. Yields are meagre at 3 to 4 tons per hectare. The Estate is owned by Shelley Sandell.
Roger Burton, the Estate’s winemaker, destalks and crushes the grapes. After this natural fermentation with vineyards yeasts takes place with punch downs four times a day. After fermentation the wine remains on the skins for 14 days. The skins are then pressed and the wine is taken to previous fill French oak barrels. The wines are then prepared for bottling which is done by hand on the Estate.
From a Bordeaux shaped bottle, closed with natural cork. The label is a charming etching of a Cape Leopard, the Tier of Tierhoek. In the glass, the wine is a bloodplum colour at the heart which pales out to ruby at the edges. Interesting rustic aromas of roadside brambles and wood strawberries. The palate repeats the nose and adds pomegranate arils, crunchy watermelon, Morello cherries and the oak with its concomitant spice and vanilla. Beautifully harmonious aftertaste with an undertow of minerality and citrus oil.
Do chill the Tierhoek Grenache Noir 2016 before you serve it, makes for greater drinking pleasure. Excellent as a glass on its own and great with food, like a good rustic Spanish paella or a Neapolitan Pizza. Perhaps a tomato based pasta dish? Or a slice of Dalewood Fromage Languedoc.
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