Groot Constantia is what I always think of as the cradle of the wine industry in South Africa. First granted to former Dutch Governor Simon van der Stel in the late 17th Century, it is a must visit on the list of anyone visiting the Cape. Any many who live in Cape Town have never visited, yet it is barely 20 minutes from the city centre. The beautiful Manor House restored after a fire in the 1920s is a perfect example of the style of living in earlier times. Simon van der Stel wrote prodigiously about wine making at Groot Constantia. The winemakers mantle now falls on the Estate’s much awarded Boela Gerber who with his assistant, Rudolph Steenkamp, is making some stonking good wines. Wines which wine awards almost by the week locally and internationally, the Groot Constantia Rosé 2018, amongst them.
The interesting thing about Rosé is that there are a number of ways in which it can be made. Boela has chosen the red wine blended with white wine route for the Groot Constantia Rosé 2018. The blend is made up of 42% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 22% Semillon and 6% Sauvignon Blanc, grown on south to southeast facing slopes on Glenrosa and Hutton soils. They are beneficially affected by cooling breezes from the Atlantic’s Benguela Current which come tumbling down the Constantia Mountains, and through nocturnal inversion, up from False Bay. The wine was made like a white wine with little skin contact with the red grapes, only enough to give the wine its wonderful pinkness. Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks and the wine then lay on its lees for 6 weeks to build up mid palate flavours. The wines were then racked, blended and prepared for bottling.
From a clear glass Bordeaux shaped bottle, closed with natural cork. The label is the traditional etching of the Manor House, elegant simple. The cork is covered with gold foil. In the glass, the Groot Constantia Rosé 2018 is gem bright and the colour of a shell with the sunlight shining through it. The aromas are of fresh summer berries, chunky watermelon, with the fullness of flavour given by ripe white fleshed peaches. Lovely undertow of tropical flowers and a refreshing brisk acidity in the aftertaste which begs you to take another sip.
Perfect as a mid morning refresher or sundowner glass. Perfect with summery foods, even some of Sonia Cabano’s Kerrie Sosaties are perfect food partners for the Groot Constantia Rosé 2018. This well known food writer and TV Chef has the perfect partner for any wine of which you may think. Click here for her recipe.
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