South Africa is set to gain the trust of consumers again with its quality to price ratio. Its new found success is thanks to a better understanding of its terroir. Gone are the days when farmers were rewarded for quantity over quality. Now dedicated producers are matching specific grapes to the specific areas within the country best suited to them. The fruition of this change in mentality is now on our wine store shelves. It’s time to rediscover South Africa.
Everyday: DMZ Concerto Red (Bishop’s Cellar, $16.78+tax)
I am constantly impressed by the quality of the wines made by De Morgenzon winery from South Africa available at Bishop’s Cellar. The DMZ Concerto is a delicious blend of Syrah, Mourvedre and Viognier. This wine delivers a great mix of New World and Old World with the black pepper and floral notes reminiscent of Rhone reds but with sweet and spicy oak tones more reminiscent of New World wines. This is a great value as are all the wines from this winery.
Serving Suggestion: Lamb stew
Gourmet: Kanonkop Estate Pinotage (Port of Wines*, $34.29)
Forget cheap espresso scented Pinotage. If you want to try what the true potential of this South African grape (an early 20th century creation of Dr. Abraham Perold, made by crossing Pinot Noir and Cinsault – known as Hermitagein South Africa) then try Kanonkop. This stand out Pinotage producer consistently delivers a rewarding experience. This is a great wine for Pinot Noir lovers, as despite its lofty 14.5 per cent alcohol it delivers ripe red fruit flavours and the seductively smooth palate that makes lovers of its parent grape (Pinot Noir) swoon.
Suggested Serving: Duck confit with stir-fried vegetables.
*Note: There are very limited quantities of this wine available.
Mark DeWolf is the Food & Drinks Editor of Occasions Magazine, a sommelier instructor and owner of By the Glass.