It’s been said that those who drink red wine are the most happiest people! One of the most simplest pleasures in life is a glass of red wine in hand.
Red wines can be very overwhelming when you don’t know your Merlot from your Shiraz, but that doesn’t have to stop you from enjoying a good bottle of red wine.
Caroline’s Fine Wine Cellar is a specialist wine retailer situated in central Cape Town. The company’s two stores are owned and managed by Caroline Rillema, who has many years of experience in the wine industry. Her passion has taken her to the major wine regions of the world, and she applies her knowledge in selecting the finest imported and South African wines she can find.
The annual Caroline’s Red Wine Review 2019 took place in the beautiful Table Bay Hotel situated at the V&A Waterfront.
The ballroom sets the scene for the tasting. The atmosphere was formal yet relaxed, with beautiful chandeliers and flowers to set the ambiance.
BEYERSKLOOF – FAITH CAPE BLEND 2015
Dark red colour with bright edges. Upfront dark fruit combines well with the spicy/cedar oak aromas at the end. Intense blackberry, cassis and cherry flavours upon entry with delicate spice and cedar aromas from the new French oak. A big structured, extremely complex and elegantly balanced Cape blend. Hints of mocha and dark chocolate complement a great finish.
BELLINGHAM – BERNARD SERIES BUSHVINE PINOTAGE 2016
Deep ruby with tints of purple on the rim. Liberal black cherry, ripe mulberry and raspberry confit aromas delivering a mouthful of plum pudding, smoked meat flavours and savoury hints of truffle, beautifully balanced with brushes of violet and winter spice oak integration on a long succulently fruited finish.
BEESLAAR – PINOTAGE 2017
The Beeslaar Pinotage is a passion born into fruition by Cape Winemakers Guild- and Kanonkop Winemaker Abrie Beeslaar, showing his expertise and understanding of this challenging grape. This wine has an intense ruby red colour, with plum cake, red fruit, and dark chocolate aromas, offering a savoury finish on the palate.
BEAUMONT – DANGERFIELD SYRAH 2016
Good colour, spicy fruit and pepper on the nose and flavours of berry fruit with fine ripe tannins on the finish make this a full but elegant wine.
BARTINNEY – CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2014
The Cabernet Sauvignon is a vibrant and full bodied wine. The nose displays aromatic plum and dense cassis with a hint of mint. Classic oak characteristics such as chocolate, cedar and roasted coffee beans compliment the black berry fruit flavours. The tannins are refined but present and this wine will be at its best in +5years.
BOUCHARD FINLAYSON – GALPIN PEAK PINOT NOIR 2017
Deep in colour. A refined mouthfeel highlights this compilation of sour cherry and violets. A refreshingly savoury spice with a dusting of talcum. The Galpin Peak’s hallmark dense core is distinctly visible in this tightly woven vintage. Expect improved detail and layered complexity as the wine matures.
CATHERINE MARSHALL – PETER’S VISION 2016
Classic, restrained elegance with a mouth filling fruit core and is seamlessly poised with pronounced aromatics of fresh black plums, mulberries, violets and pencil shaving minerality. Tannins are supple and well- structured with fresh acidity to support an opulent mid palate for texture and balance. Selected casks of both varieties were blended 57% Cabernet Franc 43% Merlot and lightly filtered to bottle.
CEDERBERG – FIVE GENERATIONS CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2017
Loads of blackcurrants with cedar wood undertones on the nose with a hint of smokiness and tobacco leaf, creating a complex wine. Good integration of oak with a velvety finish on the palate. A prime example of a well-crafted South African Cabernet Sauvignon.
DE TRAFFORD WINES – THE DRAWING BOARD 2016
The best barrels of Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon were chosen from wines produced from the magnificent vineyard site high up on the eastern slopes of the Helderberg mountain.
GRANGEHURST – BLEND 2009
Dark ruby/mulberry colour; red berries with some mint, cedar and mocha aromas & flavours. A medium bodied barrel matured red wine with smooth, ripe tannins. Recommended drinking 6 to 15 years from vintage.
GROOT CONSTANTIA – GOUVERNEURS RESERVE 2016
Deep intense red colour. Many ripe rich flavours on the nose, black cherries, plums, blackcurrant and hints of chocolate and cigar box. These rich flavours follow through on the palate.
KAAPZICHT – STEYTLER PINOTAGE 2017
Sweet spice, freshly picked red plums, black cherries and cola are supported by aromatic toasted coconut and milk chocolate from the youthful oak. The bright cored palate of the 2012 shows more elegance and freshness, but retains the characteristic fine grained, polished tannin structure that is accessible and mouth-watering now, but will also develop further complexity with bottle age.
KANONKOP – PINOTAGE 2017
Showcasing wonderful complexity on the palate with elegant tannin structure and a long dry finish, the Kadette Pinotage from Kanonkop remains a reliable crowd-pleaser. Indulgent notes of sun-ripened red fruit intertwine with rich aromas of mocha on the nose. The flavour profile progresses with great finesse on to the palate where finely-grained tannins impart the wine with a velveteen texture and silky mouth-filling quality.
KEERMONT – STEEPSIDE SYRAH 2015
This is an intense wine with a bright strawberry red colour. Spicy, floral aromas are complimented by hints of cinnamon, ripe strawberries and black current. The palate is full and broad with ripe spicy fruit. The tight structure gives the wine a succulent dry finish with lingering flavours of vibrant and savoury red fruit.
KEET – FIRST VERSE 2016
The Cabernet Franc adds the spicy, restrained elegance and fine-grained tannins, the Merlot introduces plum and red berry flavours, while the Cabernet Sauvignon provides rigidity with firm tannins and blackberry and cassis flavours. The rich and ripe mulberry flavours of the Malbec are balanced by the fresh red berry acidity provided by the Petit Verdot.
KEN FORRESTER – THE GYPSY 2014
A very concentrated, focused blend with layers of deep fruit. The character is expectedly somewhat “wild” a little brambly with hints of nutmeg, cinnamon, dark spices, with vanilla scents and a distinct, concentrated red-fruit focus. Great for laying down and keeping for at least ten years but already rewarding if allowed to breathe in a decanter.
KLEINE ZALZE – FAMILY RESERVE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015
An intense bouquet of cassis and currants give way to a full palate of opulent dark fruit which is followed by hints fynbos and a finely structure on the back palate. The fine grained tannin profile gives this wine great structure, yet without compromising Kleine Zalze’s signature elegance. A brilliant example of how great Stellenbosch Cabernet can be, highlighting the perfect balance between new-world opulence and old-world elegance.
LAIBACH – CLAYPOT MERLOT 2016
Deep, dark colour. Some choc chip flavours with hints of mulberry and mocha. Full bodied with lots of structure and good velvety tannins. A burst of fruit on the palate with crushed berries, spice and some white chocolate evident. Good length and complexity.
LE RICHE – RESERVE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015
Classic Cabernet fruits with currants and cassis are supported by a fresh vibrant nose. Lead pencil shavings and cedar aromas compliment the overall complexity and sophistication. The palate shows sweet, ripe fruit balanced by round, structured and juicy tannins. A lingering, balanced finish lined with a good acidity reveals power to improve with time and an underlying elegance.
LEEU PASSANT – DRY RED 2017
This medium to full bodied wine has aromas of bergamot, tobacco and dark fruits. The palate is structured, with firm, grainy tannins, spices and herbs, and fresh dark fruits. The finish is dry, layered and long. Best served at 16-18°C, this wine will greatly benefit from decanting if drunk within the first 3 to 5 years after bottling and will reward if cellared properly over the next few decades.
LEEUWENKUIL – HERITAGE SYRAH 2017
Red and black fruit, olive, lavender, fynbos and white pepper. Surprisingly dense fruit given its relatively low alcohol, fresh acidity and crunchy tannins, the finish having a salty quality to it. It is fresh, rich and tannic with exquisite balance.
LOURENSFORD – CHRYSALIS 2015
The wine has a dark and intense colour. Aromas of concentrated ripe blackcurrants, blueberry fruit and cherries, olives, violets, tobacco leaf, cedar wood and a touch of Cape fynbos greet you on the nose. Big and bold, this wine has a dense palate which is structured yet explosive, bursting with upfront berry fruit flavours. Supported by an elegant, velvety combination of black cherry, olive, cassis and mulberry fruit.
LUDDITE – SHIRAZ 2014
A deep purple, vibrant and youthful colour while spice and dark fruit dominate the nose with hints of liquorice. Plums and spice on entry, concentrated fruit sweetness with cloves and cinnamon. Great balance of fruit and tannin lead to a long dry finish.
MOUNT SUTHERLAND – SYRAH 2016
Continental style Syrah. Layers of aromas such as rose petals, black cherries, cloves and freshly milled white pepper. Succulence and richness on the palate and ends in a pleasant, long and ripe finish.
MORESON – MKM PINOTAGE 2015
The Pinotage is a rich, heavy red wine. It is also considered one of the Top 10 Pinotage wines in South Africa. You can expect a bold-on-fruit wine with well-integrated plum and oak tannins. The Môreson Pinotage is smooth and elegant on the palate with a slight mocha bouquet.
NICO VAN DER MERWE – MAS NICOLAS CABERNET-SHIRAZ 2015
The Nicolas van der Merwe Red is a blend of Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon which demonstrates gentle black fruit flavours that collaborate with a graceful wood character. The palate is well balanced and fruity with powdery tannins, leading to an opulent and complex finish. This red will continue ageing for more than 10 years.
OLDENBURG – MERLOT 2015
Radiant, bright red hues. Blackcurrant, mint and savoury aromas prevail. The wine has a juicy, mineral core with fresh acidity and perky tannins. It is very accessible for immediate enjoyment but can be aged for a further 5 years at least.
OAK VALLEY – GROENLANDBERG PINOT NOIR 2018
Delicious berry flavours of maraschino cherry, vibrant strawberry and raspberry notes. Juicy, clean, soft, and elegant.
PLAISIR DE MERLE – SIGNATURE 2012
Inky dark in colour. Displays layers of spice, cassis, dark berry and black fruit and hints
of Espresso. Rich dark chocolate, blackcurrant and a variety of red berries. Tannins firm and oak well integrated with the fruit. Full-bodied with oak adding hints of tobacco and cedar. The tannins will provide structure for a long ageing period in the bottle of between 10 to 15 years.
RAATS FAMILY WINES – FAMILY CABERNET FRANC 2016
The nose shows dark and red cherry. Dark berries, spiciness and herbs linger on the palate. The wine has great purity of fruit with a hint of wet-stone minerality and a velvet soft finish.
RADFORD DALE – BLACK ROCK SYRAH 2016
This is a blend that consists of Syrah, Carignan, Cinsault, Grenache, Mourvedre, Viognier. Earlier picking means lower alcohol and bright, fresh expression of the fruit. The nose shows complexity through interesting spice and fynbos aromas and a prominent cherry note. On the palate the wine delights with generous concentration and refined, smooth texture as well as a clean mineral finish.
RAINBOW’S END – CABERNET FRANC 2017
Nuances of dark cherry, earthy, black berries, tobacco and black forest cake. There is underlying fynbos and lavender. Deep ruby in colour and a palate with savoury complexity, there is no truer representation of a more authentic Cabernet Franc. The wine is bottled without filtering or fining, therefore natural deposits may be found in the bottle.
REYNEKE – BIODYNAMIC RESERVE RED 2015
Elegant aromatics of fragrant white pepper, anise, and violets are balanced on the nose leading to blackcurrant and fennel seed on the palate. The wine has textured, round tannins which with bottle age will integrate further. Layered fruits of the forest and tamarind spice linger on the palate.
RIJK’S CELLAR – PINOTAGE RESERVE 2014
The Reserve Pinotage from Rijks Private Cellar is a tremendous wine, well-deserving of its trophy. Opaque black in colour, it sports a complementary nose of blackcurrant and liquorice with nuanced aromas of fynbos. Superb flavours flow with ease on to a creamy palate that displays a refined tannin structure. Impeccably balanced, the wine pairs fruit and wood in perfect harmony.
RHEBOKSKLOOF – BLACK MARBLE HILL SYRAH 2016
With dark plum aromas, aromatic spice and black pepper nuances from the oaking, this wine confidently reflects bold and generous Shiraz styling. Smooth-textured and with juicy palate appeal.
RUSTENBURG – PETER BARLOW CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2017
This wine is made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from our very finest vineyard. It is characterized by an upfront perfume, intermingled with concentrated cassis, black cherries and some herbaceousness. This multi-layered wine can be enjoyed immediately, but will benefit from further cellaring.
SARONSBERG – SHIRAZ 2017
The wine has a deep, dark purple colour with succulent ripe fruit flavours supported by expressive yet delicate floral notes and scents of violets and spice. The mouth-feel has depth and clarity of fruit with integrated oak flavours. Finely crafted tannins and a beautiful layered fruity finish.
SAXENBURG – SHIRAZ SELECT 2013
Selected from the best of Saxenburg, this wine is very complex and well balanced, spicy and a long finish with very fine tannins.
SHANNON – MOUNT BULLET MERLOT 2016
Considerable emphasis is placed on maximising the different clone expressions and therefore each parcel is vinified and matured separately before final blending. The wine has a fragrance of ripe red fruits such as plums and dark cherries, with earthy complexity and yet still expressing minerality. Maintaining a good acidity lends to outstanding freshness with a well integrated ripe and seductive tannin structure. Incorporating a minimal winemaking intervention approach, such as natural ferment and only two “punch downs” daily, retains silkiness and elegance.
STARK-CONDÉ – THREE PINES CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2016
This Cabernet Sauvignon is particularly rich and soft. The nose carries cedar with blackberry aromas while the palate adds mocha to the fruity flavours. The wine fine with a lengthy finish.
UVA MIRA – THE MIRA CABERNET SAUVIGNON BLANC 2016
The palate is silky with concentrated flavours of black cherry and plum. The well-integrated tannin structure is complemented by refreshing acidity and a dry, lingering finish.
VILAFONTE – SERIES M 2016
The Series M 2016 displays a dark mulberry hue, with inky depth. Attractive in its subtlety, this wine displays pure, elevated aromas of cranberry, ripe raspberry and sour cherry fruit. The aroma palette is further nuanced by vanilla, pencil shavings, cedar and toasty baking spice. Finally, fragrant Lilac invokes a delicate floral headiness. Lean and poised on entry, a fine core of acidity supports its succulent mid-palate. The tannins are fine-grained and velvety, adding plushness. Nothing is rushed with this wine. It continually builds in intensity, showing fullness of body and a long finish of blue fruit.
WATERFORD ESTATE – THE JEM 2014
A wine which encompasses our entire philosophy at Waterford Estate, the true reflection of the diversity and fruit on our property. Intriguing aromatics of fresh fruit, wild spice, warmth and complexity complimented by the well layered and integrated tannins to offer an elegant yet long lasting finish that is classically dry and rewarding.
WARWICK ESTATE – THE BLUE LADY CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2015
The wine is opaque in the centre with a translucent licorice rim. It offers blackberries and crème de cassis with hints of graphite and tobacco leaf on the nose, all combining to promise a mouthful of power. The full-bodied palate has an opulent texture and a wealth of fruit that will leave you clambering to pinpoint each one. Complex layers peel off as you sip; expect savoury notes of roasted meats and fynbos to fresh violets, coffee as well as a mineral element. The Blue Lady 2015 offers intensity and purity; with a balanced symmetry that is pure poetry.
Wednesday 23rd October CAROLINE’S ANNUAL WHITE WINE REVIEW at The Table Bay Hotel, V&A Waterfront. Meet the top sixty South African white and MCC winemakers and taste their best. Tickets available @ R350 at Computicket only, Bookings open 24 September.
Time: 17h00 – 21h00
-STRAND STREET, CAPE TOWN CBD-
Head Office and Web Store
Ground floor, Matador Centre
62 Strand Street
+27 21 419 8984
-TOKAI ROAD, TOKAI, CAPE TOWN-
Forest Glade House
+27 21 712 2258
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