Gerhardt Swart, the winemaker at Flagstone Winery in Somerset West, makes a range of the finest award-winning wines. The Flagstone Dark Horse 2014 is one of them. What the team at Flagstone does is to make wines which show respect to our 350-year-old winemaking heritage and celebrate the vineyards from which the grapes come. Shiraz is not an easy grape for a wine farmer, it bolts away like the Dark Horse and needs to be correctly pruned and tamed and planted in the right places.
The Shiraz grapes for the Flagstone Dark Horse 2014, which come from a variety of growers in the Western Cape. The grapes are handpicked in the early hours of the morning and, once in the cellar, the grapes are stripped off the stalks and lovingly tendered fermentation takes place in open top fermenters. I have watched the punch downs taking place at Flagstone – a real physical workout pushing the crust of skins under the surface to extract as much aroma and colour, and gentle tannins as possible. Ageing in French Barrels ensures delicious, age-worthy wine with a silky structure and a brooding, mysterious nature, capable of surprising you with its power and energy – a real Dark Horse!
It looks like
Part of the premium range of Flagstone, the Flagstone Dark Horse 2014 wine is bottled under natural cork in a Bordeaux shaped bottle with a new label, the horse being reminiscent of Chinese Brush Painting. In the glass, it is a deep dark bloodplum at the centre which pales out to ruby at the edges.
It smells like
A generosity of dark berry fruits – blackberries, roadside brambles and mulberries. Undertow of chocolate, a couple of grinds of white pepper and kitchen spices.
It tastes like
The berries, the chocolate and the spices all overflow from the nose into the mouth and the wine is mouth filling from entry right through to the long aftertaste. A truly regal wine.
It’s good with
As a glass to drink after dinner in philosophical conversation like will England go home with the World Cup, it is perfect. It is a wine just made for food and Ina Paarman’s Roast Pork with Leeks & Fennel comes to the rescue. Click here for her recipe.
Read more about Flagstone Wines – CLICK HERE