First up was their 2019 Sauvignon Blanc (the 2018 received both a Michelangelo and Veritas silver). I loved it as it has a perfect balance of tropical fruit, loads of green figs and just a touch of green. Pretty much everything I look for in a Sauvignon and good value at R85. Next up their Chenin (the 2018 got a Michelangelo double gold). Unwooded and fresh, it showcases gorgeous stone fruit, pineapple, quince and a hint of spice. The finish is bone dry with just enough acid to make it mouthwateringly moreish. The prolific Chenin is a dangerous grape in the hands of careless winemakers. The Groot Phesantekraal Chenin is a delight and at R60 per bottle from the estate, very good value indeed.
It was interesting to compare this to the next wine, their premium barrel-fermented Anna de Koning Chenin. Extensive lees contact gives it a wonderful richness. Complex and intense with apricot kernel, marmalade and pine nut notes, this is a serious food Chenin and is available from the estate at R140 per bottle.
Next up was their 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon (their sold-out 2015 was awarded Veritas gold in 2018). It showcases Durbanville’s typical dusty, herbal notes along with lovely red and black fruit and a hint of cooling spearmint. Gentle tannins means it’s accessible now, but will really shine if aged 3-5 years. It’s available from the estate at R120 per bottle, very good value given what’s in the glass.
The final wine in the flight was their limited-release 2017 Berliet Pinotage (Michelangelo gold). Elegant tannins, ripe red fruit and subtle toasty oak make it lovely now, but with careful cellaring for 8-10 years, it’s going to be a stunner. I’ll never know, because I can’t keep any wine that long.