Wine Concepts hosted their 9th exclusive Chardonnay & Pinot Noir Celebration at The Vineyard Hotel in May.
Guests were treated to a fine selection of charming Chardonnay’s and praise-worthy Pinot Noir’s! This popular annual festival gave wine lovers the opportunity to taste the best offering of these two noble varietals from a select 40 of the country’s top producers.
As a wine lover I was blown away by some of the wine producers I have never heard of. Many are not shown at other festivals because they are often too expensive and too small in production. As such the showcase is regarded as one of the country’s most exclusive boutique wine tastings.
Delicious snacks that complimented the styles of wine on offer was served throughout the evening.
NEWTON JOHNSON – FAMILY VINEYARDS CHARDONNAY 2017 & SOUTHEND CHARDONNAY 2017
Illuminating quality, powerful yet precise and energetic. Green lime, chalk and allspice give ornate lift to the richer, riper lime, yuzu citrus and headier spices. Grape tannin buttresses the vibrant citrus flavour, lengthened by the bright acidity in to a resonating, dry and granular finish.
Ripe limes & waxy honeycomb are illuminated by sharp ginger and lemon zest, with an airy scent of jasmine. Succulent citrus fruit in the mouth, ladled with lees texture and buttery brioche, narrowing to a racy, lively finish.
NEWTON JOHNSON – WALKERBAY PINOT NOIR 2017
Deep in colour, with appealing aromas of liquorice, black cherry and spice which combine on the nose and palate with great finesse alongside mineral and earthy qualities, lend the wine an alluring complexity. Its richly layered flavour profile complements the wine’s long, savoury finish.
Newton Johnson Vineyards is a family owned, specialist wine producer based in the Hemel-en- Aarde region of South Africa.
LOTHIAN – MCC BRUT ROSÉ 2015
Made from Pinot Noir grapes. Fresh and fruity with aromas of young strawberry, raspberry and notes of grapefruit on the nose with rose petal and cream leading on the palate leading to crisp bright apple balanced by creamy and minerality in the mouth.
On the banks of the Palmiet River lies Lothian Vineyards and the architectural marvel that is Lothian House. It’s a slice of paradise and a piece of heaven. Lothian Vineyards is a class all on its own.
SHANNON – ROCKVIEW RIDGE PINOT NOIR 2017
Flavours of vibrant raspberry, strawberry, currant and cherry on the palate. The palate is full and persistent, boasting an elevated freshness that adds wonderful balance. Smooth tannins provide a glossy concentration on the mid-palate that results in a lingering finishing and a subtly spiced aftertaste.
SHANNON – ELGIN PINOT NOIR 2018
It has a distinct sour cherry aroma with subtle hints of rose petal. On the palate, cranberries and cherry with well-balanced acidity.
MULDERBOSCH – CHARDONNAY 2018
With a distinctive golden hue, the wine appears rich and inviting. Vanilla pod and fresh custard are some of the comforting aromas that greet the nose, lifted by ripe fruit notes of sliced pineapple and papaya.
A refined chalky edge gives the palate cut, offset by rich and creamy weight on the mid-palate. The wine’s final length is marked by a citrus zest note that provides a long and rising terminal.
LAARMAN – CLUSTER SERIES CHARDONNAY 2017
The nose on this wine shows some lime and green apple. The rich, round entry is full of fruit, including hints of tropical pineapple and
guava, while the finish lingers with subtle nuttiness from the oak.
Beauty is often found in the smallest things. There is plenty to cherish in a single perfect berry, but in a cluster, there is so much more. Quality vineyards from different regions is found to produce the possible best wines for the Cluster Series.
LAARMAN – FOCAL POINT CHARDONNAY 2017
The brilliant yellow green in the glass already hints on the clarity of fruit on the nose – citrus aromas such as lime and tangerine peel as well as tropical pineapple. Nuances of minerality and the intriguing nuttiness of nougat combine and beautifully harmonise the quality of the cool climate Chardonnay with its considered oak maturation.
A focal point is where it all comes together. That precise moment of clarity and harmony. This Focal Point wine presents the variety in its purest expression – a culmination of the elements of its specific terroir, respected by the style in which it is crafted. It captures the attention with its artistry and sets the scene for the ultimate enjoyment.
KRUGER FAMILY WINES – PEARLY GATES PINOT NOIR 2017
Perfume on entry. Cherries and raspberry with mineral and some oak on mid palate and shows great balance. Lingering earthy and berry flavours.
KRUGER FAMILY WINES – KLIPKOP CHARDONNAY 2018
Medium golden yellow coloured. Beautiful aromas of banana, mango, buttery touch but not too much. Full bodied palate with medium acidity and flavours of crushed banana, passionfruit, pear and peach. Long finish.
KRUGER FAMILY WINES – WALKERBAY CHARDONNAY 2018
Prominent melon, lightly toasted almonds on the palate, with well-balanced acidity and a full, round mouth-feel.
KRUGER FAMILY WINES – SANS CHENE CHARDONNAY 2018
Sans chêne refers to a wine made without any oaking regime but it also means without chains. Woody nose with hints of butter and herbs. The palate is fresh with subtle. Good acidic balance.
LA BRI – CHARDONNAY 2018
Clivia miniata is the sketch on the label. The bright yellow colour of the Clivia is synonymous with their lively Chardonnay and its floral notes. Wonderfully fragrant nose with top notes of blossom, fynbos and hay before citrus and apple. The palate is light bodied yet possesses extraordinary fruit purity and a long finish.
The name La Bri is derived from outlying town of Brie which was the stomping grounds of the de Villiers family in the early 13th century. L’ Abri is also French for ‘the refuge or Haven’, a perfect name for this property, as it is safely nestled in the imposing amphitheatre of the Franschhoek valley.
QUOIN ROCK – CHARDONNAY 2018
Initial perception of vanilla-oak essence is followed by ripe orange-peel, melon and lemongrass characters on the nose, leading through to a lovely, creamy buttery mouthfeel with a wonderful, fresh finish. Beautiful oak integration.
Quoin Rock got its name from Quoin Point in the Agulhas region which happens to be the second most southerly point of Africa after Cape Agulhas. In Latin, ‘quoin rock’ means ‘ cornerstone’, of which you’ll find many in the ‘Cave’s’ structure at the wine cellar in Stellenbosch.
JOURNEY’S END – HAYSTACK CHARDONNAY 2018
Clear and bright, straw with a hint of green. Oak and fruit are perfectly matched, each having its say without dominating: citrus peel and melon enriched by a subtle, savoury biscuit overlay.
Luscious and fruit-forward, Journey’s End Vineyards Haystack Chardonnay is a delightfully approachable wine. Haystack Chardonnay offers a well-structured and complex sensation on the palate.
JOURNEY’S END – DESTINATION CHARDONNAY 2017
The Destination is the pinnacle of white winemaking at Journey’s End. Rich and full on entry and throughout. The nose exhibits concentrated apricot and ripe peach with layers of lime zest and orange. The fruit component is complimented by well-balanced almond and vanilla spice from generous oak aging. Minerality ensures freshness and adds linearity to a long lasting creamy finish.
JOURNEY’S END – CHARDONNAY 2017
Expressive fruit, initially lemon and orange peel, but under that it’s more tropical, mango and pineapple, all seamed through with crushed almond, savoury oak tones. This is a layered, complex wine, the result of cool-grown fruit carefully handled, plus barrel selection. The palate is silky, with a tangy finish from the fruit and acid combination, extending the flavours.
JORDAN – NINE YARDS CHARDONNAY 2016
The Nine Yards Chardonnay is made in a Reserve Style, from a barrel selection from their best vineyard site. A style characterised by refreshing linear acidity and mouthfilling fruit textures. Classic Nine Yards flavours with lime citrus and fragrant oak spice.
JORDAN – BARREL FERMENTED CHARDONNAY 2017
A variety of chardonnay clones planted on different slopes, harvested at different ripening levels and all of it fermented and matured in French oak barrels. These practices help to achieve natural balance and allows for different textural components which we then blend to achieve finesse and complexity. Bold and graceful with fragrances of lemon biscuit and overripe oranges.
JORDAN – UNOAKED CHARDONNAY 2018
This wonderfully accessible gem delivers a citrus scented bouquet that reveals layers of tropical fruit and floral notes that tumble on to a rich, full palate. Ripe winter melon and limey citrus flavours are balanced out by a rich leesy undertone that rolls in a long, well-balanced finish.
TESSELAARSDAL – PINOT NOIR 2018
The wine has a lovely, fine, bright sour red berry character and even hints of violets on the nose. It has a more lifted acidity and tightness, bright and elegant start to finish with a hardening line of minerality placing it more in the old-world than the new. It is distinctly feminine and elegant with a lovely dusting of grape tannins.
Tesselaarsdal was founded in 2015 by long-standing Hamilton Russell Vineyards employee, Berene Sauls. This wine is named after the historic Overberg farming hamlet of Tesselaarsdal, not far from the Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge wine appellation, in which Berene was born – a descendant of the freed slaves who were bequeathed the land by former East India Company settler, Johannes Tesselaar in 1810. Extreme care is taken to ensure this small-production, classically styled Pinot noir expresses the personality of the cool, maritime, Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge from un-irrigated vines and its elevated, stony, clay and iron-rich soils.
HAMILTON RUSSELL – PINOT NOIR 2018
On the nose, red and black fruit plus a pronounced herbal, almost minty note to go with a little musk and spice while the palate is pure with beautiful tannins, the finish particularly dry.
HAMILTON RUSSELL – CHARDONNAY 2018
A beautiful wine with great length and complexity. Prominent pear and lime fruit aromas and flavours are brought beautifully into focus by a tight line of bright natural acid and a long, dry minerality. An elegant, yet textured and intense wine with a strong personality.
FRYERS COVE – PINOT NOIR 2015
Classic medium bodied Pinot Noir colour with gentle youthful plum edges that deepen to the central core.Combinations of strawberry and wild raspberry on the nose with touches of ripe full bodied honeyed berries at the back and delicate forest floor notes on finish.
Fryer’s Cove Winery is located on the West Coast. The wine tasting venue is in a disused fish factory. You can taste the sea in the wine and while the sea breeze enfolds you. The vineyards are only 650 metres from the Atlantic Ocean – at Bamboesbaai, north of Doringbaai.
FLEDGE & CO – KATVIS PINOT NOIR 2017
This bright red Pinot Noir brings ripe black cherries, rose hip, Turkish Delight, cranberry, bright spice, undertone of forest floor and musk all cloistered by ripe tannin, oak spice and savoury finish to the nose and palate.
FLEDGE & CO – PINOT NOIR 2016
This is the top selection of the top Pinot barrels from the vintage. It has a much darker nose (than Katvis) but elegant with delicate flavours and a lift on the finish from good acidity making it an ideal food wine.
EDGEBASTON – CHARDONNAY 2018
The wine is made from 4 different vineyards. As with previous vintages, the wine shows an elegant minerality with lime-citrus, sourdough and cinnamon flavours. The tight minerality keeps a wonderful acid grip on the palate showing good aging potential. A floral note of wild, white flowers such as frangipani and almond blossom is obvious on the front of the nose and follows through the palate.
EDGEBASTON – PINOT NOIR 2017
A fresh, modern, New World style with a nod to the complexity of Burgundy. This Pinot Noir shows ripe, fresh Raspberry, Strawberry and Vanilla notes on the nose. The palate has a touch of minerality and earthiness layered below the fresh, clean fruit.
DE WETSHOF – FINESSE CHARDONNAY 2018
True to its name, the Finesse Chardonnay from De Westhof Wine Estate delivers an elegant arrangement of delicately balanced flavours. A combination of zesty citrus and prominent nut characters express the charm on the mid-palate, while an underling mineral quality adds wonderful structure and sophistication to the wine’s profile. The finish is bright and crisp, making this medium-bodied gem a gorgeous food-pairing wine.
DE WETSHOF – LIMESTONE HILL CHARDONNAY 2019
Displaying excellent varietal expression, the Limestone Hill Chardonnay from De Westhof Estate is a feast for the senses, displaying expertly balanced complexity and purity of fruit. Its unwooded character elegantly highlights a fruit-focussed flavour, presenting charming notes of lemon, grapefruit, peach and apple as the stars of the show. Tropical fruit flavours present themselves delicately throughout the palate, supported by a lovely creaminess of texture imparted by lees contact.
DE WETSHOF – NATURE IN CONCERT PINOT NOIR 2017
Displaying wonderful depth and complexity, the wine delivers luscious aromas of ripe cherries and berries on the nose and palate. The mid-palate reveals velvety nutty qualities that compliments the wine’s smooth tannic frame.
Perfectly balanced, delivering a well-rounded flavour profile, the Nature in Concert Pinot Noir has a deliciously supple finish.
DE GRENDEL – OP DIE BERG CHARDONNAY 2018
The wine has a bright green to straw hue. On the nose citrus flavours of grapefruit and marmalade that on palate is well supported by soft vanilla undertones. Great length and weight in the structure of the wine resulting in an ideal food partner.
The Chardonnay is made from grapes grown in a vineyard established on a family farm famous for apples and pears on top of the Witzenberg Mountain in Ceres.
DE GRENDEL – OP DIE BERG PINOT NOIR 2016
Bright cherry red in colour, perfumed dried rose petals on the nose supersede luscious red cherry, raspberry and mulberry aromas underscored by nuances of clove and earthy fynbos. An entry of tart cranberry and black plum on the palate is emboldened by fruity pomegranate tannins before finishing with soft, velvety elegance.
The acidity driven elegance and mild tannins of Pinot Noir make for what some would describe as the ultimate food loving wine. Elegant berry flavours compliment game bird, chicken or veal, while gentle tannins and succulent acidity cut through richer venison, lamb and even spicier curried dishes.
CREATION – RESERVE CHARDONNAY 2017
Vibrant aromas of fresh grapefruit and fragrant apple mingle with a hint of honey and a sprinkling of cinnamon. The palate displays buttery nuances.
Beautifully balanced by the characteristic Creation minerality as a hallmark of freshness and finesse.
CREATION – RESERVE PINOT NOIR 2017
An inviting bouquet of spice – peppercorn and clove – supplemented by a hint of dried apricot. Smooth yet complex on the palate.
Layers of dried fruit mixed with of raspberry and spice. A lingering wine with supple tannins to ensure excellent maturation potential.
CHAMONIX – PINOT NOIR RESERVE 2016
The Chamonix Pinot Noir Reserve shows a ruby red colour, with notes of cherry, wild red berries, crushed black pepper and violets on the nose. Although firm in structure and intense in flavour, textures are mellow and round, expanding with time to extraordinary opulence and length on the palate.
CHAMONIX – CHARDONNAY RESERVE 2016
It has a bright straw yellow colour with golden highlights and exquisite aroma, with scents reminiscent of tropical fruit, ginger, spice and oatmeal. Well structured and minerally with flavours of lime and toasted almonds on the palate.
BOUCHARD FINLAYSON – MISSIONVALE CHARDONNAY 2017
A commanding wine with solid backbone and a lengthy, lingering palate! Flavours of pear and melon enhanced by peachy taste sips offer a lively and long lasting mouth feel. Best wood maturation has complimented to offer complexity and structure which will grow and embolden this wine over the next five years! Expect nutty flavoured integration as the aging process evolves.
The Hemel-en-Aarde Valley and its associated terroir has proven itself to be one of the Cape’s most treasured Chardonnay locations. The name Missionvale stems from the mission hospital established on the domain property in the early 19th Century. All grapes are harvested from this Estate to create one of the finest Chardonnays.
BALEIA BAY – INGE CHARDONNAY 2015
This wine has a mouth-watering citrus fruit taste with hints of oak and richness that fills the palate. It exudes ripe tropical fruit notes, dried peaches and charming hints of butterscotch and toffee. The wine is soft in the mouth, shows citrus on the mid palate and a lingering finish of lemon drops with a fine trace of oak.
BALEIA BAY – ERHARD PINOT NOIR 2015
Delicate red berries, fine herbs and fragrant notes of violet. Dark cherry skins and light spicy perfumes on the palate allow the earthy notes to gain lift.
ANTHONIJ RUPERT – CAPE OF GOOD HOPE SERRURIA CHARDONNAY 2017
This wine delivers a beautiful mix of ripe peach, citrus and lime aromas with a toasty oak undercurrent. The palate follows suit with bright fruit notes that reveal tangy passion fruit and citrus zest flavours which are supported by a well-integrated oak, supported by a creamy texture and elegant structure. A fine ribbon of acidity runs through the length of the wine, ushering in a lingering mineral finish. This is a wine of great finesse and refinement.
ANTHONIJ RUPERT – CAPE OF GOOD HOPE SNEEUWKRANS PINOT NOIR 2016
The palate is light-bodied and soft on entry – with bright red berry flavours. The wine reveals its firm core of dark, fruit and blackcurrant with smoky oak flavours. Pronounced but gentle grip of tannin from oak which is well integrated. Elegant with a lingering finish.
ALMENKERK – CHARDONNAY 2017
This Chardonnay is a beauty with intriguing notes of blossom, citrus peel, white peach with a touch of coconut. A well textured palate with subtle hints of honey.
Almenkerk uses different vineyard site selection and excellent vineyard maintenance to ensure that only quality grapes are produced and harvested for their wines.
PAUL WALLACE – REFLECTION CHARDONNAY 2018
The Reflection Chardonnay leads with prominent notes of lemons and limes with a touch of fennel on the nose. A fruit-forward entry onto the palate where citrus notes and a delicate oaky sweetness, combined with an underlying minerality produce a wine with good breadth, length and mouthfeel.
The fruit from Elgin is distinct, crisp, fresh with honeyed nutty nuances when gently wooded with some floral and fynbos characteristics.
PAUL WALLACE – BRAVE HEART PINOT NOIR 2017
A bouquet of raspberry, cranberry and red cherry aromas with discreet roast nuts on the nose makes way to a delicate entry, blossoming in poised concentration of wild berry fruit flavours and oak spice gaining complexity and richness through to a long, finely textured finish.
A seriously elegant Pinot Noir with signature sweet cherry notes revealed upfront. Well-rounded, sensually succulant with a long lingering.
RADFORD DALE – CHARDONNAY 2017
This wine has a balanced acidity, with citrus flavours and integrated oaking with ripeness and great persistence on the palate on the more expansive side.
Genuinely mineral, with a crisp lime-citrus edge and an elegant yet intense durability. A Chardonnay striving to be individual, focused on backbone not butter.
RADFORD DALE – FREEDOM PINOT NOIR 2017
Fresh and perfumed berry fruits mingle with earthy tones in a complex and compelling nose that urges deeper reflection. The palate shows restraint through the satin texture and perfumed, light berry tones.
Refined tannins and fruit concentration round out the mid palate before a clean mineral lift towards the long, tapering finish.
RICHARD KERSHAW – SMUGGLERS BOOT CHARDONNAY 2017
Peach blossom, orange peel, struck flint and a hint of vanilla on the nose. A gorgeous mineral-led approach is followed by nectarine flesh, dried
apricot and white peach underscored by a fresh, lively acidity, more linear frame and complexity from oatmeal, peat whisky and green apple skins. Fabulous length of flavour and depth of fruit intensity is further enhanced with a rich texture and spicy oak nuances.
Originally designed for the overseas. The name derives from the time of trade embargoes when growers & winemakers smuggled grapevine material into the country by hiding the cuttings in Wellington boots.
SPIOENKOP – TUGELA RIVER GHANDI PINOT NOIR 2016
Red berries,strawberry and raspberry. Good fruit and mouthfeel. Fruit is purely a secondary element with raspberries and dark cherries. Lovely spice adds life with nutmeg and cloves. Every nuance is reflected on the palate. Round and elegant. Stunning finish.
SPIOENKOP – TUGELA RIVER CHARDONNAY RESERVE 2017
Nice delicate wine with very pleasant acid-notes and easy to drink. Good tropical fruit up front with prominent pineapples and melon. Butter in the mouth but also carries a little tartiness with a good long finish.
STORM – RIDGE PINOT NOIR 2017
This wine displays richness and generosity with black cherry and spice with a saline undertone. Silky tannins complement the voluptuous, dark fruit perfume.
Ridge Pinot Noir hails from a cool, eastern slope in the Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge with low-vigour, stony, clay-rich Bokkeveld shale soil.
THORNE & DAUGHTERS – COPPERPOT PINOT NOIR 2018
A most delicious, primary fruit-driven, crystalline Pinot Noir by Thorne & Daughters. This vibrant Pinot treads on the lighter side of Pinot Noir, displaying succulent cherry fruit on the midpalate and an ever-so-slight hint of savoury rusticity supported by a bright acid backbone.
The perfect everyday drinking, while certainly not simple, Pinot Noir. Thorne and Daughters Wines was started in 2012 by John and Tasha Seccombe to produce authentic wines in the beautiful Western Cape.
Over the centuries, Burgundy has become known for being the best land in the world for producing both Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, and it is for this reason that Burgundy wines have received such acclaim.