Simonsig Wine Estate is situated near Koelenhof Station in the Stellenbosch Wine Appellation. Founded by pioneering couple Frans and Liza Malan who bottled the first Estate Chenin Blanc and Pinotage in the 1960s and then created a Champagne style wine, currently known as Cap Classique. That wine was named Kaapse Vonkel [Cape Sparkle] and in that clichéd phrase, the rest is history. The farm is now owned by their sons, Francois, Viticulturist, and Johan the Cellarmaster. They continue the pioneering ways of Frans Malan.
Mr Borio for whom this wine is made, was an Italian Prisoner of War and remained here after World War Two. He was a specialist in Cement work and built cement fermentation and storage tanks on Simonsig and a few other Stellenbosch Wine Estates.
In 1993, a planting program was underway by Francois and his team. Only the best available clones were planted. These clones are all virus treated and come from South Africa, France and Argentina. The 1996 Shiraz was the first wine to include grapes from the new plantings.
After successful elevation in the cellar, and 67% of the blend spending 10 months in oak with 90% French Oak Barrels and 10% American white oak. 15% Second fill, with the rest of the wine in third and fourth fill barrels. 33% of the blend was matured on top quality French oak staves.
From a Burgundy shaped bottle closed with natural cork. The label is simple and elegant. In the glass, the heart is a deep blood plum which pales out to a rich ruby at the edges. The aromas are of red and black berries, plums. The palate is a repeat of the aromas with the flavours of Parma Violets and the oak spices and vanilla in undertow and support. Well integrated tannins. Eminently drinkable now, it will reward you after a year or two of cool cellaring.
The Simonsig Mr Borio’s Shiraz 2108 is perfect as a glass for serious and philosophical conversation. It shines as a food wine. Large black mushrooms baked with garlic and herbs as a vegan or vegetarian option are excellent. Dianne Bibby’s Red Wine Ragu with Rigatoni, suitably Italian for Mr Borio. Click HERE for her recipe.
Listen to my Podcast about the Simonsig Mr Borio’s Shiraz 2108 – CLICK HERE
Read more about Simonsig Wine Estate – CLICK HERE