Kleine Zalze Vineyard Selection Shiraz Mourvèdre Viognier 2010

Kleine Zalze, last year celebrated fifteen years of successful wine making and the way I see it the next fifteen will be even better. Not only are the wines consistently good year on year but they seem to have that little extra finesse each vintage which is a tribute to the winemaking team lead by Johan Joubert.

Previously owned by wine and brandy wholesaler, Gilbeys, it was purchased by current owner Kobus Basson and his business partner Jan Malan in 1996. They immediately began to refurbish extensively, adding in an underground maturation cellar, developing the surrounding residential estate, opening the lodge and award winning restaurant, Terroir in 2004 and throughout it all, bringing in medals, awards and accolades for their wines around the world. But for Kobus, nothing is as important as the team of people around him and the relationships they have built up over the years.

Various ranges of wines are produced at Kleine Zalze and I particularly enjoy the wines from their Vineyard Selection. Delicious barrel fermented Chenin Blancs and Chardonnays make excellent food partners, tried and tested last weekend with a seafood braai! I always keep a few bottles of the excellent Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir and know that I can serve them to any self respecting red wine enthusiast with confidence!

There was, however, a wine that I had not tried from the Vineyard Selection which is the Shiraz Mourvèdre Viognier. A wine friend had told me about it and recommended I try a bottle and as we were having dinner at the recently opened Societe Brasserie in Tokai it was a perfect opportunity to do so!

This blend consists of selected grapes from 80% Stellenbosch Shiraz vineyards, 15% Tulbagh and Walker Bay Mourvèdre and 5% Viognier from the Breede River region. The three varieties were crushed separately and after crushing’ the grapes were cold macerated for three days before fermentation started. 50% of the Shiraz grapes were punched down to add concentration and 50% were pumped over in stainless steel tanks to ensure that only the purest fruit was obtained. The Mourvédre and Viognier were pumped over to ensure optimum flavour extraction from the skins. The wines were then carefully blended to obtain the best fruit and cultivar characteristics and then aged for a further 14 months in third and fourth fill French oak barrels.

The result is a delightful wine with complex plumy, spicy aromas which follow onto a gentle soft and accessible palate with juicy red and black fruits with hints of floral fragrance and spice. We enjoyed the way it complimented the fillet of beef at the restaurant.

Buy from Wine Concepts @ R88.50



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