Winemaker: Boela Gerber
Background: Winemag.co.za with sponsorship from global investment advisory company, RisCura, have an annual competition honouring top Cape Bordeaux style reds called the RisCura Red Hot Wine Awards. 2016 saw 59 entries from 46 producers which is slightly down on the number of entries last year but according to Christian Eedes, who chairs the tasting panel, the quality was up this year resulting in a higher average score of 87.2 compared to last year’s 85.3. Using the 100 point quality scale scoring system 13 wines were awarded 90 or higher with the highest scoring wine, the Groot Constantia Gouverneurs Reserve Red 2013, receiving 94 points.
Groot Constantia is considered South Africa’s oldest wine farm which has been around for 328 years and producing wine without missing a vintage since 1685!!. Groot Constantia has evidence of this as bottles, pieces of bottles and bottle seals dating back as far as 1774 have been discovered in various places around the world. One bottle was found at the bottom of the ocean in the archipelago outside Stockholm in the late 1940’s by a diver; three bottles were discovered in the cellar of a castle near Belgium that date to the period 1760 – 1840; a bottle piece featuring the Constantia bottle seal was discovered on a beach in the Delaware Bay and identified by historians to be part of the cargo of the Severn – a ship that was stranded there in 1774; another find was a very crude example of the Constantia wine seal – evidently far older than all the other examples – which was unearthed in an excavation in Meiningen in Germany.
To honour Groot Constantia’s rich history as the origin of the South African wine industry the estate decided a few years ago to resurrect and re-use an original, historic wine label, which prominently features a sketch of the Manor House and use them on the Gouverneurs Reserve Range. “Groot Constantia’s main point of difference within the industry is the fact that the estate is the oldest in the country and it is for this reason that we chose to use an old label as our ‘new’ wine label,” states Boela Gerber, Winemaker for Groot Constantia. “This special label not only honours the estates history but it also distinguishes the Reserve range of wines.
The Gouverneurs Reserve Red 2013 is a blend of 32% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Merlot, 28% Cabernet franc and 9% Petit Verdot and after fermentation the wine was matured for 16 months in barrel (80% new with rest in 2nd and 3rd fill barrels).
Result: The wine shows intense plum colour with bracing aromas of black cherries, ripe plums and hints of dark chocolate! These senses come together on the palate bringing out the flavours of the dark fruits discovered on the aroma backed up by black pepper and spice on the finish. The structured tannins along with the firm acid will allow extra complexity after several years of cellaring.
When to drink: Now till 2026!
Drink with what: Roast leg of Springbok or even a delicious Sunday roast beef with Yorkshire pudd!!!
Expect to pay: R373.00