Damage Caused by Devastating Fires at Druk My Niet
To read more about the fires that damaged parts of the Druk My Niet farm, click here.
Cape Town Fires
Many Cape Town residents have lost everything after an especially devastating fire season. While it’s not unusual for this time of year, questions are being asked about whether some of the fires were started deliberately.
Click here to view the video- http://carteblanche.dstv.com/player/1168834/
Pre launch wine tasting in Kuala Lumpur
Druk My Niet had a successful pre launch wine tasting in Kuala Lumpur. With Malaysia's Sommerliers Thomas Ling and Trina Chee and representatives of the Asian Expat magazine.
Three bottles were selected ( or showcased) for the evening. As Mr Thomas Ling commented South African wines are like diamonds still yet to be discovered. Our newly bottled Shiraz was a favourite followed by our 2011 Cabernet Franc. And C68- Chenin Blanc was a perfect pair with Asian-style spicy lemon prawns.
The official launch will be showcasing all our wine Collections.
2015 Harvest report
The 2015 harvest came like “a thief in the night”, we picked our first grapes 13 days earlier, compared to the 2014 harvest.
Budburst was 17 days earlier which meant that every stage of the ripening process was earlier, we also had a very dry growing season, forcing us to manage our irrigation a bit better.
The white varieties were unbelievable, great phenolic ripeness was achieved, backed with low pH’s and great acidity.
All the reds were more concentrated than the 2014’s with smaller berries and bunches. This meant that we didn’t have to over work our grapes in the cellar. All the wines showed great tannin structure and freshness, which is now accustomed of Druk my Niet reds. We can’t wait to taste them after malolactic fermentation.
Click here to download the harvest report.
Wine maker Abraham J. De Klerk leaving
It is with great sadness that we are announcing the departure of our wonderful wine maker Abraham J. De Klerk. In these past six years Abraham has been invaluable in helping us find our true voice and he shaped the award winning wines we are making today.
His work has been excellent, both in quantity and quality. His contributions to Druk My Niet have been priceless and we thank him for his dedication, loyalty and hard work. We wish him success in his future endeavors, and hope that one day our paths may cross again.
Druk My Niet Wine Estate talks about their wine brands
Druk My Niet talks about their different wine brands. Click link below to listen to their podcast.
Tanat, Tinta Amarela and Tempranillo. Handcrafted, there 3 come to alive in this world first. They combine to a full expression that will leave you without words.
Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. The eye perceives what the nose discovers. Velvety and intense with wild berries, vanilla, cashew and toffee flavours.
Top Wine SA Hall of Fame 2013
Good Cab Franc isn't as elusive as it was years ago
MORE PLEASE! Red Jasper has got many of the delicious things you might dream about in a good Bordeaux-style blend.
While perhaps a little too forward for some, it's a fine example of the many lovely red things that Stellenbosch vintner Bruwer Raats comes up with at various cellars apart from straight Cabernet Franc... Cab Franc is what he's been most successful with over the past decade, and while some will be critical of the decision to expand his range of wines, others will welcome the introduction of a different variation on a theme...
Raats, together with fellow Stellenbosch producer Warwick, has led the way in developing a market for South African reds made from a variety that most winemakers only use as a small component in a Cabernet Sauvignon- or Merlot-driven blend, if at all. In an about turn, so to speak, Red Jasper is mostly Cab Franc, with other Bordeaux varieties performing the supporting role for a change.
Cabernet Franc has long frustrated cellar masters wary of its austerity, fearful of the green character that can result when you don't get it right in the vineyard or cellar. However the number of Cape wineries whose Cab Franc efforts command respect has grown to 20 or so - including Buitenverwachting, KWV, La Petite Ferme, Longridge and Raka. Moreover, not all of the wines are high-priced - relatively speaking, recent releases of Ridgeback and Zorgvliet expressions have offered particularly good value, and it was just last year that Raats introduced a second-tier Cabernet Franc for sale under the Dolomite label at around R100pb (versus well over R300 for the flagship).
Here are the vintages that have done the category proud in terms of good reviews locally and/or internationally during the past couple of years:
Avontuur 2009; Buitenverwachting 2009; Claime d'Or 2009; Druk My Niet 2009; KWV Mentors 2010; Lisha Nelson 2008; Longridge 2007; Oldenberg 2009; Raats 2009 & 2010; Raka 2009; Ridgeback 2007; Von Ortloff Quintessence 2008; Warwick 2008 & 2009; Whalehaven 2007; Zorgvliet Silver Myn 2007
Click HERE to read complete Blog Top SA Wine - Editor Mike Froud. | Click HERE for details on the ratings and awards given for these wines as well as the prices, ex-cellar...
Germans savour SA wines
International sommeliers Andreas Larsson (Sweden) and Markus Del Monego (Germany) have requested wines for a blind tasting session of South African wines in Germany.
The results will be published exclusively in TASTED journal, as a supplement to TASTED magazine. Date 17-19 July 2012.
Druk-My-Niet Cabernet Franc 2009 - 90 points
Druk-My-Niet Invictus 2009 - 89.5 points
Please click here to view the results (pdf format).
Decanter World Wine Awards 2012 - Results
The 2012 Decanter World Wine Awards results were officially announced yesterday at The London International Wine Fair.
With 14 119 wines tasted this is the largest entry ever for the Decanter World Wine Awards, now in its 9th year.
Full results are available on the Decanter stand at the fair and at http://www.decanter.com/dwwa/2012/.
‘The quality of any awards is only as good as the quality of the individual judges, DWWA chair Steven Spurrier said, announcing the results this morning. ‘And we have the best judges in the world.’
Over 200 wine merchants, sommeliers, journalists and authors including 54 Masters of Wine and 11 Master Sommeliers, took part in a week of judging in April.
Although the majority of wines entered come from the world’s great wine regions, a particular strength of the Decanter World Wine Awards is its championing of lesser-known and smaller regions.
Out of the 47 countries which sent wines to the Awards, UK wineries, for example, entered 97 wines, of which 89% won a medal, of which two were Gold, and one was a regional trophy, the UK Sparkling over £10 trophy, which went to the Gusbourne Estate Blanc de Blancs 2007.
The only country in the world to do better than this was New Zealand, with 92% of wines entered receiving an award. Another smaller region that did exceptionally well is Greece. Though the economic crisis has put it at the forefront of the news, one area in which it has been quietly excelling for some time is with its wines, with 72% of all wines entered this year receiving an award.
Gaia Wines swept the board with a total of three Gold Medals; Lyrarakis, Estate Argyros and Domaine Gerovassiliou also won one Gold Medal each.
A number of other unusual winemaking countries fared particularly well this year. Turkey saw 83% of its wines receive an award, Slovenia achieved 77% and Croatia 63%.
Tastings director Christelle Guibert said, ‘It’s great to see so many rarely-seen wine-producing countries do so well at this year's DWWA, often faring much better than more established countries and famous regions. It just goes to show how far the quality of wine has come in countries that, like the UK, were once considered to be on the fringes of wine production.’
South African Regional Trophy winners:
South African Single-Varietal Red over £10
Bellingham The Bernard Series, Bush Vine Pinotage 2010
South African Red Blend over £10
Spice Route Chakalaka 2009
South African Pinot Noir over £10
Chamonix Pinot Noir Reserve 2010
South African Red Bordeaux Varietal over £10
Fleur Du Cap Cabernet Sauvignon Unfiltered 2010
South African Chardonnay over £10
Jordan Nine Yards Chardonnay 2010
South African Red Rhône Varietals over £10
Nederburg Manor House, Shiraz Mourvedre 2010
South African Sweet over £10
Nederburg Private Bin Edelkeur 2008
South African Sweet under £10
Nederburg Winemaker's Reserve Noble Late Harvest 2010
South African Chenin Blanc over £10
Spier 21 Gables Chenin Blanc 2010
South African Sparkling over £10
Villiera Monro Brut 2007
The South African gold medal winners:
Almenkerk Wine Estate Chardonnay 2011
Bouchard Finlayson Kaaimansgat Limited Edition Chardonnay 2010
Cirrus Syrah 2009
Diemersfontein Carpe Diem Pinotage 2010
Eikendal Merlot 2009
Ernie Els Merlot 2010
Ernie Els Proprietor's Syrah 2010
Kasteelberg Shiraz 2010
KWV Cathedral Cellar Chenin Blanc 2011
KWV The Mentors Orchestra 2010
Namaqua Spencer Bay Pinotage 2010
Paul Cluver Chardonnay 2010
Saronsberg Provenance Shiraz 2010
Waterkloof Circle of Life 2010
Zonnebloem A Place in the Sun Shiraz 2011
See all the results here.
WINE.CO.ZA's Spotlight on Druk my Niet T3 - March 2012
Abraham de Klerk, winemaker at Druk my Niet near Paarl, talks to us about their flagship T3 blend.
This wine is unique in the world and is a blend of 37.5% Tannat, 37.5% Tinta Amarella and 25% Tempranillo. The Druk my Niet T3 2009 fits the Wine.co.za March X-files Spotlight campaign perfectly.
Please see the video below where Abraham de Klerk talks to us about this interesting wine.
For more information on the Druk my Niet T3 2009 please click here.
Please click here to view the photo album from our visit. - Ed
X-files: Drinking outside the box
This month we have chosen to shine the spotlight on wines that are different, unique or just out of the ordinary. Our search for the weird and unusual took us to a range of regions in the Western Cape where we found some fantastic wines.
We started our search close to home and kicked off our tasting and travelling at Wedderwill with General Manager Wolfgang von Loeper. Wedderwill practices biodynamic principles in their wine production and spray (amongst others) cow's milk and sea water as part of their vineyard processes.
Wolfgang chose to showcase their flagship Syrah 2006 as a representative of their unusual biodynamic approach to viti- and viniculture. The Wedderwill Syrah 2006 won a Grand d'Or medal at last year's Michelangelo awards and is an elegant wine that is gentle on the palate. Watch our video to see Wolfgang talk about how the weather influences the vines and wines at Wedderwill.
Our journey then took us to Stellenbosch where we visited four wine estates, Middelvlei, Vergenoegd, Asara and Blaauwklippen. Blaauwklippen and Asara each presented us with Blanc de noir's. Blanc de noir roughly translates into white from black and refers to the process whereby a white wine is made from red grapes.
Blaauwklippen is known as the foremost producer of Zinfandel in South Africa. Zinfandel is a cultivar that is better known in Croatia, Italy and California. Blaauwklippen's White Zinfandel 2009 is definitely a crowd pleaser with its delicate baked apple and pear flavours and dry finish. The wine however still retains a bit of colour and has a soft salmon blush. Managing Director and winemaker Rolf Zietvogel chatted to us about this unusual cultivar and how it came to find a home on the estate. To listen to more of what Rolf had to say click here.
Asara Wine Estate and Hotel lives by the slogan 'out with the ordinary'. Their Cabernet Sauvignon Blanc is certainly a not so ordinary wine, with this Blanc de noir having no hint of the red grapes it once came from. TheAsara Cabernet Sauvignon Blanc 2011 resembles its feminine sauvignon blanc mother in terms of flavour profile, yet it still has the structure and finish one would expect from cabernet sauvignon. Winemaker Francois Joubert is doing lots of interesting things in the cellar this year including a Beaujolais Nouveau style wine due for release in March. Click here to hear Francois talk about the sexy Cabernet Sauvignon blanc.
As we drove into the heart of Stellenbosch I couldn't help but be amazed at the fact that houses gave way to a wine estate in 'Onder Papagaaiberg'. When we reached Middelvlei I look around and was again amazed that you can not see any houses when you visit the tasting room. This gem of a wine farm produces a Free-Run Pinotage that not only tastes good but does good too. A percentage of the sale of the Middelvlei Free-Run Pinotage 2009 is donated to the Endangered Wildlife Trust and if you purchase the wine from the estate you get a hand beaded wire animal too. Proprietor and winemaker Tinnie Momberg explained the wine to us, have a look here for yourself.
Our last Stellenbosch stop was at Vergenoegd Wine Estate where Winemaker John Faure explained the intricacies of producing Port style wines. The Faure family have farmed on the Vergenoegd estate since 1820 and 1986 saw them produce their first vintage port. Producing Port is an extremely meticulous process and to learn more about it please watch the video of John. The Vergenoegd Limited Edition 1999 Tawny Port is a beautiful wine made from 100% Tinta Barocca grapes and has a lovely flavour profile that includes toffee, dried apricot, nuts and marmalade.
The second half of our exciting journey to discover weird wines took us to the wine producing regions of Paarl, Franschhoek and the Swartland.
First off we popped in at Solms-Delta Wine Estate for a chat with their consultant Winemaker Hilko Hegewisch. Solms-Delta focuses primarily on Rhone (a region in France) cultivars such as Shiraz/Syrah, Mourvedre, Viognier and Grenache. In particular they are one of only a handful of producers that produce a vine dried wine in South Africa (Asara is another producer). But we were there to talk about a less serious wine, the Solms-Astor Cape Jazz Shiraz NV. The Cape Jazz is a light hearted wine that can be enjoyed with anything really as long as you have a good time. Click here to hear what Hilko has to say about the wine.
Our next stop saw us in Paarl at Druk My Niet Wine Estate where we were met by ever smiling Winemaker Abraham de Klerk. This was the second time in a year that I'd visited the estate and I was excited to be able to re-taste the flagship T3 blend. The Druk My Niet T3 2009 is a very unique wine as it is the first of its kind to blend the three varietals of Tannat, Tinta Amarella and Tempranillo together. The wine has a beautiful acidity and full tannin structure and is definitely a wine to lie down for a few years before enjoying as it will continue to develop. To listen to Abraham chat about the wine, please watch the video.
The last of our adventures took us into the Swartland where most of the winemakers, including Lammershoek Winemaker Craig Hawkins, are known for doing things differently. The Lammershoek Cellar Foot Underwater Syrah 2011 certainly didn't disappoint in the interesting category as it was aged in French Oak barrels under water. This unusual aging method helped to prevent oxygen from affecting the wine. The end product is a smooth wine with a soft lingering after taste. Click here to watch Craig talking about the wine.
If you have a story about any unusual wines please send it to our Editor at email@example.com and we'll consider featuring it on the site this month. To view more pictures from our trip please click here.
If you liked this article, then please click to visit our March press room.
Get a taste of the vintage at OmmiBerg festival 2012
Flock to the Paarl rock - the biggest in the winelands, on Saturday 10 March for the OmmiBerg 'Round the Rock' festival: a daylong indulgence in sweetly seductive part-fermented wine, sumptuous savoury treats, live music and ambient tranquillity at 12 wine farms.
Top crisp, fresh bread with charcuterie and cheese and find a cool spot on a vine-bedecked lawn to nibble, glass in hand. Sample some bubbles with savouries, relax in a red-wine bath or recline a bit to treat your feet to a grape skin foot massage.
For something different, sample some grappa or chocolate paired with wine, try the refreshing EGA salmon-pink drink, or slice into chocolate salami while soaking up some jazz. Step into a vat and squelch your feet through grapes that come up to your knees, and invite your children to join you to burn off some energy.
Kids can enjoy a pony ride, tractors or slip ‘n slide, balloon shaping, face painting and kids’ croquet; and perhaps a small snooze as the sun descends behind the beautiful ‘berg’.
Early bird tickets for adults are priced at R60 from www.computicket.com, or R70 on the day at each of the 12 participating estates, while accompanied children aged under 18 enter for free. Unfiltered wine, live music and Zwiebelkuchen (onion tart) tastings are free throughout the event, while sit-down meals and special activities should be booked in advance and are payable separately.
Click on each of the following to view the full program of activities: Boland Kelder, Druk my Niet, Fairview, KWV,Laborie, Mellasat, Nederburg, Rhebokskloof, Ridgeback Wines, Spice Route, Under Oaks and Windmeul Kelder. Also participating will be Du Poort Heritage Centre.
For further information visit www.ommiberg.co.za, Twitter @OmmiBerg or Facebook @Paarl Wine. For a glimpse of the action, view the You Tube video from last year below.
Harvest Festivals in the Winelands: March
The winelands are still buzzing with harvest activities and an array of festivals to celebrate this exciting time in the industry. Below is a list of events worth attending in March.
Stomp and Press Festival - 3 March 2012
The team at Manley Wine Lodge invite you to their annual Stomp and Press Festival and Antique Auction to celebrate the end of the harvest. Everyone is welcome to take up the “stomping” challenge! Grapes are crushed with the feet and the person, who manages to extract the most juice, within a certain time period, will win a prize. For the children there will be a jumping castle and water sports. For the avid golfer we offer the chance to score a few “holes in one” and win prizes.
The gates will open at 09h30 and the Antique Auction will start as usual at 10h00. The Festival will last the whole day and everyone is welcome. The Entrance fee is Adults R 20 (includes a free wine glass and wine tasting) and children enter for FREE. Visit www.manleywinelodge.co.za for more information.
Overgaauw Wines Harvest Festival - 3 March 2012
Unwind while relaxing and enjoying live music by Jacobus Brink and savouring the beauty of the moment. Bring the whole family to Stellenbosch and share in our festivities! Activities include: grape treading and a jumping castle. Overgaauw wines and fruit juice can be purchased. No other alcoholic beverages allowed.
Entrance limited to 150 guests, so book soon! Tickets are R150 for adults and R50 for children. For more information please visit their website at www.overgaauw.co.za.
Vrede en Lust's De Savoye Harvest Festival - 3 March 2012
Vrede en Lust invite you to join them at their annual ‘De Savoye Harvest Festival’. On De Savoye Day, they celebrate the 2012 grape harvest; honour the founder of Vrede en Lust; release a number of new wines and have a lot of fun! This year they celebrate the 10th anniversary of the new winery and 324 years of passion, since Jacques de Savoye founded Vrede en Lust in 1688! There are only 120 tickets available. Tickets cost R295 per person. Visit www.vnl.co.za for more information.
Harvest of Joy - 3 March 2012
Harvest of Joy is held on the banks of the Breede River between Worcester and Villiersdorp. It offers activities such as river boating, canoeing, mountain bike competition, as well as wine and olive tasting of all the cellars and estates in the Kwaggaskloof area.
Participating cellars include Alvi’s Drift, Stettyn Cellar, BC Wines, Aan de Doorns, Eagles Cliff, and Overhex Wines. For more info visit www.worcesterwineroute.co.za.
Eikendal Weintaufe Harvest Celebration - 4 March 2012
Don a festive attitude and head out to the Stellenbosch Winelands when Eikendal Estate pays homage to 31 years of quality winemaking with its popular Weintaufe Harvest Celebration. What started out as an intimate ceremonial blessing to celebrate the end of the harvest at Eikendal more than three decades ago, has evolved into a not-to-be-missed event. Bring your picnic blanket and laze at the water’s edge with live music, craft stalls, lucky draws, vineyard tractor rides, fly fishing, barrel stomping, pony rides and loads of kiddies entertainment. Food and wine will be on sale.
For more information on the festival or to book your tickets prior to the event contact the cellar on tel: 021 855 1422 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets cost R60 per person (includes glass and barrel tasting). Kid’s under 12 free.
Paarl Ommiberg 'Round the Rock' Festival - 10 March 2012
A harvest festival perfect for the family. For the adults: preview young unfiltered wines, pick your own grapes, stomp grapes and learn how a grape press works. On top of this you can also test your winemaking skills by creating your own blend! Kids can take tractor rides, enjoy jumping castles, slippery slides, pony rides and a ride on the famous goat's wagon. With 12 participating farms it is good to know that a shuttle service will run between farms.
The participating farms are Druk My Niet Wines, Boland Kelder, Fairview, KWV Wine, Laborie, Mellasat, Nederburg, Rhebokskloof, Ridgeback Wines, Spice Route, Under Oaks and Windmeul Kelder. Tickets cost R60 for over-18’s (includes wine tasting of young wines and a commemorative glass). Visit www.ommiberg.co.za for more information.
Wellington Wine Harvest Festival - 17 and 18 March 2012
Wellington celebrates the bounty of their harvest with the 6th Wine Harvest Festival. Spend the day or better yet make a wine-filled weekend of it with family and friends. For more information, the full programme and a list of participating farms contact Peter or Trudy at tel 021 864 2479, email email@example.com or visit the website atwww.harvestfestival.co.za.
Asara Pure Food Harvest Market - 21 March 2012
Join Asara as they reap the rewards of the 2012 harvest! On offer will be newly-harvested, seasonal fruits and vegtables, gourmet meats, local cheeses, Asara's freshly baked breads, handmade macaroons and our celebrated wines. Relax to live music while you take in the breathtaking mountain and vineyard views. There are plenty activities that will keep the little ones entertained, including face-painting. Bring along an empty canister and let your child press their own grape juice on the handpress, courtesy of our winery.
This event is FREE and starts at 10h00 and ends at 15h00.
Durbanville Wine Valley's 'The Feast of the Grape' - 21 March 2012
The Durbanville valley celebrates the fruits of their labour with the annual Feast of the Grape. Hosted on twelve wine farms and falling on Human Rights Day, the event marks the end of the grape harvest and the arrival of autumn with a one-day feast filled with grape gastronomy, country fare, live music, squishy grape-stomping, hay rides in the vineyards and, yes, plenty of seasonal wines to sip.
Participating wine farms include: Altydgedacht, Bloemendal, D’Aria, De Grendel, De Vallei, Diemersdal, Durbanville Hills, Hillcrest Estate, Klein Roosboom, Meerendal, Nitida and Phizante Kraal. Visitwww.durbanvillewine.co.za for more information.
The Franschhoek Oesfees at Solms-Delta Wine Estate - 24 March 2012
The Franschhoek Oesfees is a heartfelt ‘thank-you’ to the valley’s farm-workers, to celebrate their hard work and bless the year’s harvest. Expect artists from all over SA entertaining thousands with the sounds of Cape rural vernacular music such as Ghoema, Cape Jazz, Langarm, Vastrap and Boeremusiek. Headline acts include David Kramer, Theuns Jordaan, Chris Chameleon, Emo Adams, Hot Water, Tribal Echo and Hannes Coetzee, and many more. Local ‘Kaapsekos’cuisine will be served. Tickets are: Early bird R95; Pre-booked online R110 and at the gate R130. The day starts at 10h00 and end at 21h00. For more information visit www.solms-delta.co.za.
Mont Rochelle Hotel and Mountain Vineyards Harvest Festival - 24 March 2012
Wine enthusiasts who prefer a more personal harvesting experience can enjoy a fun-filled day for a small group of guests in this working wine farm in the Cape Winelands. Starting with a hearty early morning breakfast, followed by grape-picking, grape-stomping, a tour of the wine cellar and wine tastings, as well as a delicious al fresco lunch at the Country Kitchen restaurant, with live music providing the vibe. A game of traditional French boules rounds off the day. There is also a special gift to take home with you.
Advance booking is essential. Call: 021 876 2770, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or visitwww.montrochelle.co.za. Tickets are R490 per person.
Celebrate harvest season at Ommiberg with the family
Online bookings are now open for Ommiberg 2012; the yearly party in Paarl around the world's largest winelands rock, which promises to deliver the best festivities yet to newcomers and loyal fans.
Be the first to sample 2012 vintage must at five-star Platter’s producers Fairview, Nederburg and KWV - the latter holding the title as most successful winery in the Veritas Awards’ 22-year history. Squelch your way through a grape stomp, blend wine and take part in a master class, or recline on rolling lawns with delectable tapas-style eats while enjoying live performances from popular local bands.
Competitive guests can try for a prize at golf chipping, cork shooting or “wine QI” – but if that sounds a little too much like work, a chocolate and wine experience or fruity grappa sampling might be more the thing.
Tempt the kids with face painting, slip ‘n slides, goat carts and pony rides while you relax in a bath of red wine or enjoy a grape-skin foot massage. Stock up on snacks and uncork some wines to enjoy as the sun descends, drawing to conclusion another enjoyable day around the big ‘berg’.
Early bird tickets for adults are priced at R60 from www.computicket.com, or R70 on the day at participating estates, while accompanied children aged under 18 enter for free. Unfiltered wine, live music and Zwiebelkuchen (onion tart) tastings are free throughout the event, while sit-down meals and special activities should be booked in advance and are payable separately.
For further information visit www.ommiberg.co.za, Twitter @OmmiBerg or Facebook @Paarl Wine.