The hills of Durbanville have a special meaning for me, as that was where my parents farmed and made wine in the 1950s and 60s. I used to ride up and down the valley visiting my friends on my thick tyred black Raleigh pedal bike.
Many of the nine grape producers in the valley who supply the grapes to the state of the art Durbanville Hills Cellar were friends of my parents. I have met their strapping young grandsons and cousins at the winery. A circle completed.
The grapes for the Durbanville Hills Pinotage 2015 come from number of vineyards spread throughout this tiny wine ward, which shows the diversity of the grapes available to Founding Cellarmaster Martin Moore and his award-winning team.
The grapes were hand harvested and taken to the cellar where fermentation took place on the skins in closed stainless steel tanks. During this time pump overs took place to gently extract colour, flavours and tannins. Almost at the end of the fermentation period, the grapes were gently pressed and the fermentation allowed to complete itself. Once dry, the wine was taken to a variety of oak treatments, in some new French oak barrels, some in previously filled barrels, and some wood alternatives, which usually means oak staves. Gentle brushing with oak means that the wood is there as a gentle support to the fabulous elegant fruit of the Durbanville Pinotage grapes.
The wine was then prepared for bottling.
It looks like
Bottled in a Bordeaux shaped bottle under natural cork closure. The label is the classical diamond shaped livery. In the glass, a deep bloodplum red at the core which pales out to garnet at the rim.
It smells like
The raspberry of the Pinot Noir parent, the rustic fruits of the Hermitage [now known as Cinsaut], sweet brown spices and whiffs of cherry tobacco.
It tastes like
Sweet plums and red berries. Nice dark cherries and Agen prune plums. Perfect in balance, medium in body with the soft tannins and oak well interwoven. Gentle waning aftertaste.
It’s good with
Pinotage is easy to drink by the glass. And perfect with food. It loves gently spicy food like well flavoured sausage off the fire, Bobotie, North African Tagines, and the traditional Cape Snoek Smoor. Do chill the wine for about 30 minutes before you serve it. Ina Paarman’s Traditional Smoorsnoek hits the mark. Click here for her recipe.
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