The von Arnim family of Haute Cabrière in Franschhoek specialises in the two great Burgundian and Champagne varieties, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Noble classics both.
Situated in the top north eastern corner of the Valley, the Estate has an Alpine outlook over the mountains and down this historic wine valley. As is traditional, the still wines from the farm are named for the Estate, Haute Cabrière, while the Cap Classiques are named Pierre Jourdan after the first grantee of the land.
The Haute Cabrière Pinot Noir Reserve 2014 is a fine expression not only of the Pinot Noir grape, but also of its planting position, its aspect and the gentle cellar elevation by Cellarmaster Takuan von Arnim. The grape perhaps reveals more about what happens in the vineyard than most others. It has a thin skin and low tannins. The vintage is a fingerprint of each passing year, one different from the other.
I remember years ago Achim von Arnim, the head of the family, telling me that the ‘oak maturation should reveal itself as a platform on which the fruit can perform.’
Gentle oak maturation takes place for 9 months in 225 litre Burgundy oak barrels.
It looks like
Bottled under a natural cork closure in a Burgundy shaped bottle. Elegant Haute Cabrière livery. In the glass, a translucent cherry red.
It smells like
Fresh crisp red berries. Autumn rain on fallen leaves. Dark mushroom notes.
It tastes like
Raspberries, fraises des bois, touches of pomegranate. Supportive oak with its concomitant spices. Fresh, refreshing, Cherrywood cigar box and gentle tannins wrapped in the long aftertaste.
It’s good with
While, lightly chilled, it makes a special glass of wine, it is made for food. I think of Coq au Vin and Beef Bourguignon as the classical dishes of Burgundy so suited to this dish. Duck is a perfect partner as is seared tuna and venison. Nic van Wyk and Westley Muller offer a variety of fine dishes in the Haute Cabrière Restaurant. If you can’t make it there, Tracy Foulkes’s Balsamic & Roasted Garlic Glazed Duck makes a lovely partner. Click here for her recipe.
Listen to my 60 second Fine Music Radio podcast – CLICK HERE
Read more about Haute Cabrière & Pierre Jourdan Wines & buy online – CLICK HERE