TOKARA trifecta with three Top 10 champion Reserve reds

TOKARA has swept the board with all three Reserve reds from the standout 2017 vintage clinching Top 10 status in consecutive South African wine reports.

The TOKARA champions are the Reserve Collection Syrah, the Reserve Collection Cabernet Sauvignon and the top tier Director’s Reserve Red. These formidable wines secured Top 10 rankings respectively in the 2020 Prescient Shiraz Report, the Cabernet Sauvignon Report and the Cape Bordeaux Red Blend Report, all convened annually by

“The recognition of our top tier wines by respected commentators in the wake of the Ferreira family’s 20th vintage celebration last year, bodes well for the future of TOKARA.."

Partnership – the only choice

It is hard not to be moved by the phenomenal international support for South African wine via social media groups such as SaveSAWine and MoveOneMillion. We’ve been debating whether wine really can be more than product, but perhaps the dire circumstances we’re currently facing reaffirm the importance of people and perception when it comes to wine.

This week I joined a discussion addressing exactly these issues. Talking to the passionate CEO of Agbiz, Dr John Purchase, Vinpro’s Rico Basson, Maryna Callow from WOSA and co-wine farmer Beyers Truter, I couldn’t help but to find some positivity in what is a very bleak time for the Winelands.

Simonsig Wine Estate, Francois-Jacques Malan, tells me what’s up on the Family Estate…

I spoke to Francois-Jacques Malan [thrid generation Malan on the Simosnig Wine Estate] recently about what has been happening on the Estate. Not only are they very busy at harvest time, they are busy for the rest of the year, finishing off last year’s harvest and preparing for summer when it all starts again.

He said “ The month of July has certainly been a one of the toughest we had to endure, with another ban on wine sales imposed on us on the 12’th of July. It certainly forced us to unexpectedly change and/or delay some of our plans.

This time, the industry stood together to fight the regulations we felt were unjust and unscientific.

South African Cabernet Sauvignon: 40 wines to buy

Great things are being achieved in the Cape with this most famous of Bordeaux varieties, with production techniques and styles evolving fast. Here, Christian Eedes recommends the 40 wines he scored highest when blind-tasting a line-up of 106 wines recently.

Cabernet Sauvignon is South Africa’s most widely planted red grape and third most-planted variety overall – 10,087ha were in the ground by the end of 2019, equivalent to 11% of the national vineyard. It has been around since the late part of the 19th century and traditionally made South Africa’s most prestigious reds. That said, one of the reasons it is so ubiquitous is because of how adaptable it is, retaining a recognisable character even when planted in less suitable locations.

The Journal: New Wines Honouring the Heritage of Diemersdal

Diemersdal Estate in Durbanville has released a new top-tier range of wines incorporating individually grown and crafted Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinotage. Called The Journal, the range honours the legacy and history of Diemersdal and the Louw family, the sixth generation of which are now presiding over the estate in the person of owner-winemaker Thys Louw.

The three wines in The Journal series are a Sauvignon Blanc 2019, Cabernet Sauvignon 2018 and Pinotage 2018 representing the finest offerings from Diemersdal made from site-specific, low-yield dryland vineyards on this well-known Durbanville property.

The name The Journal was chosen by Louw to encapsulate the continuous legacy of Diemersdal’s winemaking tradition and history.

De Wetshof Stalwart Finesse Chardonnay Achieves Top 100 Status and Double Platinum

The De Wetshof Finesse Chardonnay 2019, from the vintage celebrating the 30th anniversary of this premium South African Chardonnay, showed that this style of wine is as relevant today as it was when Danie de Wet made the first Finesse in 1989.

The 2019 vintage of De Wetshof's Finesse achieved Top 100 status in the National Wine Challenge, one of South Africa's leading wine shows, with its judges' score presenting the wine with Double Platinum status.

Johann de Wet, CEO of De Wetshof, says, "It is a great honour to receive this award for a vintage celebrating the 30th anniversary of De Wetshof Finesse. This wine was introduced in 1989, the early days of Chardonnay in South Africa, to show consumers the bright freshness this cultivar can show with lesser oaking in older wood.

Ken Forrester Champions Rhone Blends and Chenin Blanc with latest Competition Results

Ken Forrester Wines, Chenin Blanc superstar, celebrates a trio of awards at the National Wine Challenge/ Top 100 SA Wines recently announced in Cape Town. The Grand Cru award for best in class, a Double Platinum medal and a Double Gold Medal were awarded for the two Icon wines in the Ken Forrester stable, The Gypsy 2015 and the FMC 2019, respectively.

The National Wine Challenge/ Top 100 SA Wines, the premier fine-wine-only competition, aims to produce a list of SA’s top 100 wines. The judging panel is made up of local wine experts, who taste each of the entries over three days.The Top 100 wines are then chosen, and from that list, the highest scorers are re-tasted for Double Gold, Double Platinum and Grand Cru awards.

De Wetshof Harvest 2020

Harvest 2020 will go down as one during which the vineyards experienced four seasons in one growing and ripening period. From the time the first Chardonnay buds appeared in August 2019 to harvesting of the final red varieties was completed at the beginning of March, the natural elements threw everything at us.

The bud-break and flowering phases of spring were accompanied by cool, mild conditions. Most important was that the temperatures remained consistent, leading to a balanced, even growth cycle. As summer set in, one or two hot days were experienced, but none of the energy-sapping heatwaves that put stress on the vines. The south-easterly wind played its usual role at this time of the year, blowing in cool air from the southern-most tip of Africa some 90km from De Wetshof.

La Motte introduces Curated Wine Tasting Experience

La Motte Wine Estate enjoys international acclaim for its innovative wine tourism offering and with the introduction of a Curated Wine Tasting Experience, guests are now invited to a special wine tasting every day from Monday to Friday. The Curated Wine Tasting Experience encourages guests to explore their passion for wine or to indulge in an exclusive and tailored wine tasting experience.

Varietal Glass-Specific Tasting

A new addition to the estate’s wine tasting line-up comes in the form of a Varietal-specific tasting. Hosted by one of the knowledgeable La Motte Wine Tasting Ambassadors, guest will be seated in a private wine tasting area and guided through an informative tasting, showcasing varietal characteristics at its best.