Cellarmaster: Nadia Barnard
Background: Waterkloof is a breath-taking estate located on the road between Somerset West and Sir Lowry’s Pass. Their modern cellar and tasting room is housed in an awesome building perched on the side of the Helderberg mountain, which offers spectacular views of False Bay and the surrounding countryside. Besides housing the cellar they boast an excellent restaurant where their wines are paired perfectly with chef Gregory Czarnecki’s award winning menu. They produce several ranges of wines, namely the Waterkloof, Circle of Life, Circumstance, Seriously Cool along their easy drinking ranges, the Peacock Ridge and False Bay.
During the hot months many of us still like to enjoy a glass or two of red but would perhaps, rather look towards a lighter style. A favourite of mine is the Cinsault from their Seriously Cool range and perfect for a hot summer’s day and slightly chilled. Waterkloof owner Paul Boutinot. Says “red wines should not actually ever be consumed above 18C, but nearly always are due to ambient temperatures. Our Seriously Cool Cinsault should be enjoyed at any temperature between 10C and 18C, with each degree in the range offering a differently delicious experience. This is not a run-of-the mill commercial wine, it is complex with persistent length and a great finish, so we have used ‘seriously’ to imply just that”.
Paul reckons that Cinsault is the Cape’s ‘Cinderella’ grape – “less fashionable, but far lovelier than her haughty stepsisters although she is very rarely given the chance to strut her stuff solo as a 100% varietal wine”. The Waterkloof Seriously Cool Cinsault adds to a growing collection of producers of this variety. Paul realising the uniqueness of Cinsault, claims it “has found her magic slippers” Grown on their old organically farmed bush vines in the Helderberg area the vineyards are cooled by the False Bay breezes which ensures slower and longer ripening periods for the grapes to develop their intense flavours, complexity and finesse.
At Waterkloof there is minimal interference, not just in the estate’s vineyards which are grown organically without conventional pesticides and fertilisers, but also in the expertly designed, gravitational cellar where naturally present wild yeast fermentation has carte blanche. The winemaking team also relies on whole-bunch pressing to extract the best juices in the gentlest way.
“The Cinsault grapes were naturally, whole-bunch fermented in open top wooden fermenters, without the addition of cultivated yeasts, and the wine stayed on the skins for 30 days before it was gently pressed,” explains Waterkloof winemaker Nadia Barnard.
The wine spent eleven months in 600-litre French oak barrels (2nd and 3rd fill) to develop its soft, supple tannins and fragrant bouquet.
Result: The wine offers a lively, plum colour with subtle aromas of vibrant red berry fruit with hints of wild spice. The medium bodied palate offers silky red cherry and ripe strawberry flavour entwined with balanced fruit acid and soft tannins.
When to drink: now till 2018
Drink with what: Serve slightly chilled with cold rare roast beef.
Expect to pay: R114.00