Archive for July, 2009
Researchers in France have found a way to identify wine so accurately they can pinpoint where the drink was made and in which barrel it was fermented.
It uses an electronic nose to make even the most well established sommelier a little nervous.
The unique way exploits the complex mix of thousands of compounds found in each bottle of wine that gives the drink subtly different scents and flavours.
Researchers analysed the compounds in vaporised samples of wine to produce detailed chemical signatures that can be matched against a database of characteristics to identify a wine’s source. They did so by using a kind of electronic nose, known as a mass spectrometer.
It means they can tell exactly which variety of grape a wine is made from, the region and vineyard where it was produced and the source of the wood used in the barrel.
Regis Gougeon, from the University of Bourgogne, in Dijon, France, who led the research, said: “In winemaking, several processes can subtly modulate the characteristics of wine.
“Wine experts use their eyes, mouth and nose as detectors and are able to distinguish wines according to their ages, grape varieties, terroirs.
“All we know is that so far, none of the sensory analyses of the wines we looked at could discriminate like we did.
“Our approach reveals the extremely high yet unknown chemical diversity of wine. It was exciting to be able to observe such a diversity at once, where many compounds, even in low concentration, may contribute to the body of the wine.”
The three million soccer fans who will invade South Africa for the 2010 FIFA World Cup will be served wine in a style befitting royalty.
Wines of South Africa(WOSA), the wine producers’ umbrella organization, is training more than 2,000 previously disadvantaged people from around the county to be wine stewards in time for the month-long tournament beginning June 11.
“More than one-third of the candidates from the hospitality industry and from the ranks of the unemployed have already received training,” says WOSA’s chief executive Su Birch.
The training initiative is being funded mainly through the sale of specialist red wines labelled Fundi, the isiZulu word for “learner.”
Producers were invited to submit wines for consideration in an open tender and in a blind tasting, a Cape Winemakers’ Guild panel chose the wine of five producers.
Fundi wines are labelled with a bright sunflower, a symbol of hope. Each bottle carries a beaded neck-tag produced by informal roadside beaders.
Some 32 national teams will compete in games and FIFA expects a cumulative worldwide TV viewing audience of 26 billion, making it the most-watched show on Earth.
Total revenues from games are expected to realize $3.4 billion US.
“Our hope is fans will tell their family and friends back home just how good South African wines are,” says Laurel Keenan, who represents WOSA in Canada.
“We also hope they will carry a bottle or two of their favourite wine back home to enjoy with their cohorts who didn’t make the trip.”
The company of wine peopleTM is a co-sponsor of this project
For more info visit: fundi.co.za
You don’t need to be an über oenophile or a sommelier to determine if a wine list is good or not. Whether you’re a frugal diner who enjoys an occasional drink or someone who goes all out for the table, it’s smart to look at your wine options to maximise a dining experience.
Next time you dine out at a nice restaurant, the following pointers should help you decipher the intimidating list.
A good wine list should have a diverse range of selections. If the wine director did his or her job, he or she will have prepared the list with loving care. As a person who loves wine, they’ll want you to taste different regions, styles and vintages at varying price points. A lower-tier bottle of wine should be as satisfying as the more expensive.
Ideally, there should be exotic varietals nestled between the more popular ones. If you spot a lot of brands that are sold at your local supermarket, it’s safe to assume the list is not top notch. You’re eating at a nice place – your food should be paired with an elegant wine, not with a generic mass market label. The whole point of eating out is to challenge and try new things.
Another great sign of a comprehensive wine list is the appearance of wine notes on each special region or grape. You’re there to eat, so you don’t have time to read a thick tome. Nevertheless, a few lines of description on what makes that certain type of wine special will help a long way in the decision-making process.
Finally, the wines should pair well with the food on the menu in terms of taste and price. A nice list will offer both red and white choices for each menu item. These choices should also have different note profiles for folks who like try different flavors. If you want something in particular, a well-trained sommelier will steer you to the best wine possible to enhance your meal.
Funky wine brand Versus and traditional, value-for-money Welmoed will be exhibiting at the upcoming Stellenbosch Wine Festival.
Join us at the Versus and Welmoed stand in Hall B at Paul Roos in Stellenbosch to taste some of our award-winning wines.
The Welmoed range maintains its proud winemaking tradition. The brand has built up a solid reputation both in South Africa and selected international markets. The range is led by varietal specifics, and placing quality ahead of price, these approachable wines combine a proud sense of history with Welmoed’s distinctive carefully crafted approach.
Versus wine brand will wow the younger audience with its uncomplicated, easy-drinking wines, and consumers are also afforded the opportunity to sample Versus new Naturally Sweet range.
Each year the Gallup Institute provides a long term study on alcoholic beverage consumption in the United States. The main area of interest in 2009 was to measure whether the current economic crisis would cause a rush towards alcohol (to forget one’s problems) or a consumption decline (less money to be spent).
Surprise: no revolution occurred in 2009. 64 % of the adults polled declare they drink alcohol, which is in line with the overall figures for the decade, between 62 and 66%.
Consumption frequency is also stable compared to last year and fits in with results from 2001, showing the distribution between moderate drinkers (more than 2/3 of the people, with 65 % saying they drank one glass of alcohol in the previous week) and regular drinkers (with 14% saying they drank 8 glasses or more during the previous week). The average consumption per week is 4.8, a slight increase compared to 2008, but still in line with previous years.
The evaluation of American’s favourite drinks also continues with the same general trend, with stability for spirit consumption, a favourite drink for 21 % of the people polled, as in 1992, and a decrease in the choice of beer, now at 40 % ( as compared to 42 % in 2008 and 47 % in 1992) with wine up slightly, with 34 %, against 31 % in 2008 and 27 % in 1992.
We’re having another Market Day wine sale at our Welmoed cellar door in Stellenbosch.
Dates: Thursday 30 July to Saturday 1 August 2009
Venue: Welmoed Cellar door. Here are the directions: Directions to Welmoed
The following wines will be on sale:
If you’d like more details regarding the sale, please contact Anri or Zoliswa at our cellar door on 021 881 8062
This year, 261 magnificent natural sites from 222 countries made it through to the second round in the global race to name the New 7 Wonders of Nature.
After an intense round of voting by the public, this was narrowed down to just 77. It was then up to a panel of experts, ranging from a former Director-General of UNESCO to a wildlife cameraman, to bring that number down to just 28.
After a lot of holding thumbs, crossing fingers and wishing on stars, the next round of results have finally come in! And…
Table Mountain is one of the 28 finalists!
In the Mountains and Volcanoes category, Table Mountain was up against some stiff competition. Each finalist was incredibly special so we thought we would take some time out from our little victory dance to find out a bit more about each one.
The Matterhorn – this mountain in the Pennine Alps is often called the iconic emblem of this legendary mountain range. At nearly 4,500 metres, it is one of the Alps’ highest peaks and lies on the border between Switzerland and Italy. Known in German as the Matterhorn, in Italian as Cervino and as Cervin in French, this peak is one of the great north faces of the Alps. As deadly as it is beautiful, The Matterhorn as claimed over 500 lives since it was first tackled in 1865.
Mount Kilimanjaro – Africa’s highest mountain is located in Tanzania with the highest peak reaching 5,891 metres. Mount Kilimanjaro includes three volcanic cones, Kibo, Mawenzi, and Shira, but don’t panic – none have ever erupted in recorded history. As one of the largest stratovolcanoes in the world, Mount Kilimanjaro is made up of numerous layers of lava, tephra and volcanic ash. The only volcanic activity recorded includes the emission of gases from fumaroles on the main summit of Kibo.
Mount Olympus – Known as Óros Ólimbos on Greek maps, this is the highest mountain in Greece at 2,919 metres. With a base located at sea level, Mount Olympus is also one of the highest mountains in Europe. Located in Macedonia, any climbing expedition would start in the town of Litochoro and traverse a rich floral kingdom along the way. The mountain is also prominent in Greek mythology as the “home of the gods” – the Twelve Olympians or principal gods of the ancient Hellenistic world. Mount Olympus also shares its name with a more out-of-this-world mountain – Olympus Mons (Latin for Mount Olympus) on planet Mars.
Mud Volcanoes in Azerbaijan - Azerbaijan is a country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia (in case you also didn’t know) and is home to nearly 300 of the world’s 700 mud volcanoes. Mud volcanoes are formations that were created by geo-excreted liquids and gases. The biggest mud volcanoes in Azerbaijan are Galmas, Toragay and Big Kanizadag. Most of them have a cone shape with heights that vary from 20 to 400m and bases that can be between 100 and 4500 metres in diameter.
Table Mountain – we know our own famous mountain needs little introduction, but a few facts never hurt anyone. Located in Cape Town in South Africa, Table Mountain’s highest point is marked by Maclear’s Beacon at 1,086 metres above sea level – about 19 metres higher than the cable station! The mountain’s original name was Hoeri ‘kwaggo (sea mountain) according to the San people, but today it is an icon for all South Africans.
Vesuvius in Italy - Known as Monte Vesuvio in Italian, Mount Vesuvius’ reputation precedes it. This stratovolcano located east of Naples in Italy is the only volcano on the European mainland to have erupted within the last hundred years. The most destructive eruption in AD 79 obliterated the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum and killed between 10,000 and 25,000 people. With a population of three million living nearby and many subsequent eruptions, Mount Vesuvius is considered one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the world.
Yushan – also known as Jade Mountain or Yu Mountain, Yushan is a national park and central mountain range in Chinese Taipei with the highest point of the range towering 3,952 metres above sea level. The park is also known for its diverse wildlife and ecology and the environment around Yushan itself spans from sub-tropical forests at its base to alpine conditions at its peak.
Unfortunately not all of these incredible mountains made it through to the next round. Take a look at the new list of finalists
Now it is up to you again. Voting has once again opened to the public and you have the power. To vote for Table Mountain visit www.new7wonders.com
The final seven will be announced in 2011.
South African wines continue to go from strength to strength in the UK market as it moves past French wines to claim the fourth spot. Wine from Australia, USA and Italy are still more popular but the gap is decreasing.
Latest market figures from analysts Nielsen show that drinkers prefer reds, whites and rosés from Italy and South Africa – which has only exported to Britain since the end of apartheid in the mid-Nineties – to those from the traditional home of wine. With demand for Chilean wine also rising fast, France could even slump into sixth.
Wine experts said France had been hit by high costs in its small vineyards, the strength of the euro, damaging petty disputes between its 21 wine regions and changing tastes during the recession. The country has seen the mass vin de table market virtually wiped out by the influx of cheap wines from the New World.
The collapse is so severe that British retailers and importers, including Tesco and Morrisons, have even clubbed together to advise the French government on how to improve the image of its wine.
Brian Howard, business development director of Wine Intelligence consultancy, said the recession accelerated the trend: “It is not as if Britain’s 27.9million adult regular wine drinkers have woken up and said ‘I’m not going to drink French wine today’.
“French is still preferred in the over-£6 category but we have seen a move away from formal occasions at home when traditionally a big French Bordeaux or Burgundy would be the must have.”
South African wines have been particularly popular over the past year because the rand is weaker than the pound, allowing supermarkets to lower prices. The average price of a South African bottle sold in Britain is £4.25.
In a significant expression of unity, five competing New World wine-producing countries will be collaborating to present a combined show at one of the most important international wine trade events next year.
Argentina, California, Chile, New Zealand and South Africa are all members of the recently formed New World Wine Alliance who will be joining forces to showcase their wines at Germany’s annual ProWein in March next year.
The alliance marks a world first in the wine industry for competitor countries to operate as a team in this way.
All five regions have continued to grow exports despite the global credit crisis and believe that by working in concert they stand a better chance of competing against the EU, whose own wine-producing members are supported by substantial subsidies in their international marketing initiatives.
Australia, which is reportedly now focusing more on the East, has not joined the alliance.
The five generic marketing bodies representing the five New World Alliance partners are optimistic about the initiative and believe their combined efforts in promoting the New World as a premium source of wines and as a network of innovation, will generate worldwide interest amongst media and trade at ProWein.
All five countries have succeeded in building their wine trades on the back of aggressive branding; by demystifying wine and thus attracting new consumers; by playing up their regional strengths and unique features and by focusing on technical, packaging and marketing innovation, while giving increasing accent to sustainable wine-growing and wine production.
Wine output growth in Italy, a major producer, will slow down this year after farmers dug up vines because of incentives under the European Union wine sector reform.
Italy’s wine output is expected to rise 5 percent from 4.6 billion liters (1.012 billion Imp gallons) produced in 2008, when it jumped 8 percent, farmers’ research center ISMEA and wine industry body Unione Italiana Vini (UIV) said in a statement after conducting joint research.
With growers actively digging up vines, this year’s output is likely to be below a 4.8 billion liter average of the past five years, but much depends on a weather ahead of harvesting.
The EU reform, which started in August 2008, offers cash to less competitive winemakers to dig up vines to cut back output aiming to drain Europe’s “wine lakes.” Under a three-year scheme, the cash premium is the highest in the first year.
Italian winemakers applied for cash to subsidize the removal of 11,600 hectares of vines in the 2008/09 year, the research said. The figure compares to a total of 788,393 ha under vines in Italy in 2008, according to Italy’s statistics agency ISTAT.
The EU reform aims to remove 175,000 ha of land under vines out of the EU’s existing 3.6 million ha.
Italian growers’ increasing efforts to prune grapes to improve quality would also rein in quantity, the research said.
Indulge in delectable gourmet treats that will tantalise your senses at the new Gourmet Lane at the Stellenbosch Wine Festival, which takes place from 30 July to 2 August at the Paul Roos Centre.
Top restaurants in the Winelands area will be serving their best dishes for festival goers to enjoy, Tuck into signature dishes paired with local wines of favourite Stellenbosch eateries – 96 Winery Road, Overture, Terroir, Volkskombuis, Joostenberg Bistro and the Barouche Restaurant (Blaauwklippen). Each Gourmet Lane restaurant will team up with a local wine estate to create a truly wonderful food and wine pairing experience. The gourmet treats will be available at R30 to R40 per dish including a glass of wine.
Over the years, Stellenbosch has become a true gourmet destination attracting food and wine lovers from all over the world with no less than three local restaurants making the country’s Top 10 Eat Out 2009 poll.
Festival goers can also visit the Clover Demonstration Kitchen where chefs will be cooking up a storm with fun themes such as Get your Game on, Magical Mushrooms, The ultimate tasting menu and Kids with Clover. Raffle tickets will be sold at each demonstration, giving you the chance of winning a wonderful Clover hamper. Funds raised from the ticket sales will be donated to the Clover Mama Afrika Project.
The Stellenbosch Wine Festival is a popular destination for both local and international visitors and has become a winelands tradition during the winter months. This year, festival goers can enjoy a selection of over 500 wines and gourmet delights from 170 exhibitors all under one roof.
Many of America’s high-end wineries are reeling from the economic downturn, as even wealthy drinkers slash spending on fine wines.
The slump comes as Americans continue to drink more wine overall. Recession-weary consumers, however, are buying more mid- and low-priced wines, causing a sharp falloff in sales of wines priced at $25 a bottle and higher.
The slump follows a long boom period for high-end wines fueled by Americans’ rising wealth and interest in wine. In previous recessions, the high end — less developed than it is now — was relatively unaffected. “Nobody in the world has seen something like this,” says Claude Blankiet, a maker of fine wines. Revenue at his Yountville, Calif., company, Blankiet Estate, has slipped 40% this year, he says.
Total U.S. wine sales rose about 5% in terms of volume in the first quarter from a year earlier, but wines priced at $25 a bottle and up fell about 12%, estimates Jon Fredrikson, an industry consultant with Gomberg, Frederikson & Associates in Woodside, Calif.
One sign of the times: Auction Napa Valley — the premier charity and social event of the year — raised just $5.7 million last month, down sharply from the $10.4 million raised last year.
The change in consumers’ buying habits, which became pronounced last fall as the recession deepened, has prompted many retailers and distributors to cut orders of luxury wines. And when they do order the higher-end wines, they are often asking for steep discounts, which are being passed to consumers.
The companies most vulnerable to the downturn, and which may not survive, are mom-and-pop vintners that began operations in the past three to five years and lack established brands, analysts say.
The good news for high-end vintners is they are coming off an extraordinary run of near constant increases in sales over the past 15 years. Meanwhile, experts say the downturn has been mitigated by California’s relatively lean grape crops in recent years, which have kept supply from outstripping demand.
Source: Wall Street Journal
The second most populated country in the world, India, is said to become one of the giants in the intentional wine market. With a population of more than 1 billion people, this market is attracting attention from all the major wine-producing countries.
South Africa is a relatively small player in the international wine market and is only the ninth biggest producer of wine. But South Africa is making inroads into the Indian market according to Wines of South Africa (WOSA).
In a recent article in The Times , WOSA indicated that India’s growing middle class is the key potential market. The consumer group consists of about 1.5 million wine drinking Indians.
Last year, South Africa exported about 700000 litres of wine to India, said WOSA spokesperson, Andre Morgenthal. Morgenthal added that although the export quantities are increasing, South Africa is not well represented in India compared to other international markets.
Mark Lester, the business development manager of the company of wine peopleTM, said this market presents a lot of challenges.
Lester said: “Realistically, the South African wine category has a great deal of work to do in this market, despite the positive statistics presented in recent years relating to growth of wine or the sheer potential size of this untapped market. The South African category is miniscule compared to the more established wine producing nations such as France or Italy, whom have truly made in-roads into this market by supporting their generic marketing bodies in a big way, not only to promote their wine category, but also to introduce wine appreciation to a consumer who is predominantly new to the fruit of the vine.”
Lester added that further market barriers such as the ever changing customs duty on wine, especially in noticeable wine consuming states, further poses a challenge to those wishing to import their wines. In essence therefore, one must not ignore the potential of this market, however one must also not underestimate what is required to succeed here. Shared common threads such as our historical colonial past, our cultural links to the sub-continent and relationships forged by co-hosting a tournament such as the IPL, should however give us the inside lane to what incredible India has to offer.
The Stellenbosch Wine Festival, which takes place from 30 July to 2 August at the Paul Roos Centre, is eager to give something back to the community by aiding welfare organisations in the area. Stellenbosch Child Welfare, Stellenbosch Animal Welfare and the Clover Mama Afrika project will each receive funds raised at the festival from concerts and demonstrations.
The preceding Wine Week kicks off on 24 July with a Concert-in-the-Cellar, where Lize Beekman, renowned musician and songwriter will entertain the crowd at Delheim Wine Estate. The gourmet evening starts at 19h00 and includes a delicious meal, exceptional wines and great entertainment at only R280 per person. Funds raised from ticket sales will go to the Stellenbosch Child Welfare.
Animal lovers can support the Stellenbosch Animal Welfare Dinner, which takes place on Friday, 24 July, at Clos Malverne Wine Estate. The evening, hosted by Middelvlei, Stellekaya and Clos Malverne, includes an unforgettable three-course dinner, a wine auction and live music at only R200 per person – all for a good cause.
The Clover Demonstration Kitchen is getting their pans dirty for the Clover Mama Afrika project by selling raffle tickets, which give festival goers a chance to win a Clover hamper at each demonstration. Last year, the Clover Mama Afrika project managed to raise R33,000 which made the building of a bakery possible. With exciting themes such as Kaas is Baas, Magical Mushrooms, Hot-Love-In-Here and Clover with Kids, the Clover Demonstration Kitchen is definitely one stop not to be missed.
The Stellenbosch Wine Festival will display a special selection of over 500 wines and gourmet delights from 170 top exhibitors all under one roof. It comes as no surprise that the festival also provides charitable organisations with a platform to create more awareness for their cause and projects. This year, the Anna Foundation that assists disadvantaged schools and communities, and Charity Wines, who raise funds for charities relating to Foetal Alcohol Syndrome, will each showcase their organisations.
The Pebbles Project that is focused on enriching the lives of children with special educational needs, will run the Kiddies Care Service, available on Saturday and Sunday at the festival. They will also be organising a toy-drive on these two days and are appealing to kids to bring along a new toy to be donated to a crèche, which will help other children to learn communication skills, hand-eye coordination, numeric skills and assist in their creative development.
The Stellenbosch Wine Festival is a popular destination for both local and international visitors and has become an ongoing tradition during the winter months in Stellenbosch.
For more info visit: wine.co.za
The recession hasn’t stopped people from popping the cork off a bottle of Shiraz or Chardonnay. The so-called banker cultivars (wine styles) and the established value wine brands are still popular among wine consumers.
But many budget-conscious imbibers are shopping for wine more carefully, just as they are for groceries or clothes.
In general, retail sales of wine and other alcohol have gone up. Booze, it turns out, is somewhat recession-proof.
“We still kind of put it in the category of an affordable indulgence,” said Danny Brager, a vice president at research firm Nielsen Co. Also, people opting to stay home rather than go out to restaurants or bars are buying wine for dinner or other at-home gatherings.
But like a fine bottle of Bordeaux, the story of wine sales in a recession can be complex for the merchants who sell it.
People are buying more from supermarkets and big chains, retail surveys show, while spending less at bars and restaurants. Smaller, independent wine shops, which tend to focus on more expensive varieties, have struggled as buyers cut back on splurging.
This trend will probably be true in the South African wine market. National retailers are dominating the wine sales and consumers are moving towards buying there wine with their groceries.
I would say that consumers are more price sensitive and cultivar (brand) loyal as the recession hits. Consumers are more afraid to make a “wrong” choice which implies that they are reluctant to experiment with new brands or wine styles.
In a recent article in the New York Times, South African wine and the “burnt rubber” debate came up again.
South Africa is the world’s ninth largest producer of wine, an up-and-comer in the global marketplace, the winner of more than its share of accolades in international competitions. How, then, have some of its wines been linked to a stench commonly coughed up by a junkyard fire: the bouquet of burnt rubber?
Most of the answer lies within the lively prose of a British wine critic, Jane MacQuitty of The Times of London. In late 2007, she tasted a run of South Africa’s flagship reds and wrote that half were tainted by a “peculiar, savage, burnt rubber” odour. In a later column she called a selection of the country’s best-rated reds “a cruddy, stomach-heaving and palate-crippling disappointment.”
Here in the glorious wine lands of the Western Cape, where the grape vines grow against a backdrop of stunning mountains, her comments were infuriating and perplexing and even derided as loony. No particular reds had been singled out by Ms. MacQuitty. Exactly which wines carried the scent of smoking steel-belted radials?
“All of us were slandered by a very general statement,” said Andre van Rensburg, the celebrated winemaker at the Vergelegen Wine Estate.
Wine aficionados began taking sides: yes, there is definitely a telltale rubbery odour, and no, it is all in your imagination. South Africans who dismissed the criticism were demeaned as burnt rubber denialists. Worse, they were accused of “cellar palate,” being so accustomed to tainted wine that their taste buds now welcomed it.
Exporters were particularly troubled. About 28 percent of the 300 million litres of South African wine sent abroad in 2008 went to Britain (and 4 percent to the United States). Many consumers do not care where a bottle originates so long as it costs about the same as a six-pack of beer. Such indiscriminate drinkers are likely to switch brands rather than risk a mouthful of charred galoshes.
“We prefer that people use the term acrid rather than burnt rubber,” said André Morgenthal, the spokesman for Wines of South Africa, which represents the exporters. “But whatever you call it, it has not been scientifically proven that the flavour even exists. We have committed our best people to find out.”
Indeed, for the past year vine-and-wine detectives from the department of viticulture and oenology at Stellenbosch University have been working the case. The “burnt rubber team” includes sensory scientists and analytical chemists. They taste, they sniff, they scratch their heads.
They are looking for the golden thread that ties together a single taste that was born in multiple locations. Is the problem with the root stock, the soils, the storage, the bottling, the techniques of fermentation? Gas chromatography is being used to separate wines into their chemical compounds, searching for a culprit among the molecular units.
Professor Bauer said each person’s perception of taste is different. One man’s burnt rubber may be another’s sun-dried tomatoes. “People’s descriptions are imprecise,” he said. “If you don’t like a wine, you come up with your own set of terms: it’s too dry, it’s medicinal, it’s cat” urine.
The team’s first task was to find out what aroma was being likened to burnt rubber. A tasting of 60 wines was organised last year in London and included critics who had sided with Ms. MacQuitty. They fingered nine reds as burnt-rubber impaired.
These wines were returned to Stellenbosch, where the lineup of suspects was handed over to a second panel of tasters. They agreed that all nine had an “off” character but concluded that only two carried the pungency of what some might identify as rubber.
These two wines were considered a good start, however. Tasters could be trained to recognize that particular flavour, and as other wines were sampled under controlled circumstances, two became 10, and 10 became 20, enough wine with the same maligned taste to weed out some obvious possibilities.
No link was found to either the variety or the vintage of the reds. The stigmatized scent was found in wines from other countries too.
These conclusions square with the theories of some of this country’s leading winemakers. Pure and simple, they blame bad winemaking for the burnt rubber taste. Specifically, they cite the occasional inattention to certain sulfide compounds that can form during fermentation.
Read full article: New York Times
Jonathan Ray, wine writer of the UK Telegraph, was extremely impressed with the Kumkani Lanner Hill Sauvignon Blanc.
He wrote: “I had a glorious glass of New Zealand sauvignon blanc yesterday, except that it came from South Africa. It was crammed with ripe tropical fruit flavours, grass, gooseberries, nettles, cat’s pee, the lot. It was full-bodied and rounded, yet crisp and zesty and deliciously succulent.
I would have bet at least one of my Ashes tickets that it was from Marlborough, but nope, it was a single vineyard 2007 Kumkani Lanner Hill made by Nicky Versfeld on the crest of the Darling hills in South Africa. (£11.99, since you ask, from Harrods and Majestic.)”
Read article: The Telegraph