Oldenburg Vineyards is situated in the cool Banghoek Valley in the North Easter part of the Stellenbosch Wine Appellation. This area on the east facing side of the iconic Simonsberg is known to be cooler than the west facing side of the Simonsberg. Hence the name <CL°. “Less than Stellenbosch Degrees.” Such a clever name. Such a delicious wine.
Nic van Aarde, the Oldenburg Winemaker, has created a stunner of a wine here. 77% Cabernet 23% Merlot in a classical Bordeaux Left Bank blend. The grapes were harvested by hand from vineyards planted on the North Easterly slopes of Rondekop. The enchanting, and so important, mainly ferricrete hill bang in the middle of the Estate. Once harvested, the Cabernet Sauvignon grapes are chilled overnight and then destalked and the grapes sorted by hand before going into stainless steel tanks for a 5 day cold soak before fermentation. The Merlot was kept as whole bunches. Pump overs took place anything up to 3 times a day for both varieties. Once alcoholic fermentation was over, the mash was delicately pressed, and the wine taken to stainless steel tanks for malolactic fermentation. Finally, a maturation period in French Oak Barrels for 16 months. 15% of the barrels were new. After blending, the wine was prepared for bottling.
From a Bordeaux bottle, appropriately, closed with a screw cap. Simple and very elegant, all in black. In the glass, the wine is a deep plum at the heat which pales out to the edges. The Cabernet shows itself with aromas of Crème de Cassis and red berry and cherry fruits. The Merlot with its plums, tomato paste and desiccated black olives. There is an undertow of cherry tobacco, dark chocolate truffles, roadside fennel and purple florals. The full rich and generous palate and the long aftertaste is a harmonious blend of limestone tannins, bright fruit and a lovely line of acidity which starts at entry. And impressive wine – ready for drinking now.
Do chill the Oldenburg Vineyards <CL° Red 2020, just improves the flavour so much, Excellent as a pre-braai sipper. Great with food, and Lizet Hartley’s Mushroom & Mascarpone Pasta with Lemon & Thyme fits the bill. She is such a wonderful cook, her website is well worth following, she sends out an email when there is a new post. Click HERE for her recipe.
Lizet Hartley doing a food demonstration
Click the little arrow on the left to listen to my Podcast about the Oldenburg Vineyards <CL° Red 2020
First aired on Fine Music Radio
Read more about Oldenburg Wine Estate – CLICK HERE