It’s been a while since I’ve posted some wine recommendations, and now that the holiday’s are upon us, it’s about time! Now, I’ve been working as a wine sales representative, so of course I’m going to be a little shameless and recommend wines I represent! But thankfully, the wines are great! I stand behind them, not only because I sell them, but because they are truly excellent wines.
South African wines are still pretty unknown in the US market, comparatively. Due to Apartheid, South African products, including wine, were not accessible in the world markets. But now that Apartheid has receded, wine is once again available to the world. The UK is South African’s largest wine importer, and the US only imports about one tenth of what the UK imports.
Haute Cabriere’s Pierre Jourdan Cuvee Belle Rose (NV), Franschoek, South Africa
Haute Cabriere’s Pierre Jourdan Cuvee Belle Rose (NV) is a great wine to start your holiday meal with. A beautiful salmon-pink color, this 100% Pinot Noir is produced using Method Cap Classique, a traditional method with a secondary fermentation in the bottle. This method provides soft bubbles that send the aroma of red berries through you nose. The wine has a delicate fresh strawberry flavor with a beautifully creamy texture. Between $25-$30 a bottle, this makes for a great hostess gift or a perfect pair with shellfish appetizers.
Botanica Chenin Blanc, 2009 Stellenbosch, South Africa
The maiden voyage of Massachusetts native, Ginny Povall, this Chenin Blanc has something for everyone! Fermented both in French oak and in stainless steel tanks, the wine has a beautifully rich palate, with flavors of green apples, apricot and honey. This is a mouth filling wine with a firm acidity, making it great on it’s own or paired with roasted turkey or oven baked ham. $23/bottle.
Big Flower Cabernet Sauvignon 2008, Stellenbosch, South Africa
This is another great wine by winemaker Ginny Povall. She tends to her grapes by hand to ensure the best possible wine. This Cabernet is light bodied, but with big flavor – Cassis, anise spice, black berry, black berry and earth. It finishes strong with bright tannins balanced by soft acidity. This wine is screaming for some lean flank steak or spicy sausage. $17/bottle.
Grangehurst Nikela, 2003, Stellenbosch, South Africa
A beautiful blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinotage, Merlot, and Shiraz, this wine is as elegant as it is strong. Nikela shows flavors of red berries, cedar, mocha and black pepper. The long smooth finish has ripe but velvety tannins. This wine is great with slow roasted lamb shanks or a creamy pasta dish, and makes a great holiday gift! $27/bottle