An Adrien Brody sort of wine. Big nose, long body, slightly wiry. But all-in-all a comprehensively enjoyable performer.
It’s also delightfully corrective against the assertion that “if it comes from ‘the big guys’ then it can’t be good.” As though “big” and “meticulous” are oxymorons (as professed by less-informed wine snobs).
The fact of the matter is that KWV, when they put their minds to it, can produce some of the finest wines in South Africa. Not least of all because they have access to so many vineyards and include more than just one or two incredibly gifted winemakers and viticulturalists on their payroll.
The Cathedral Cellars range, in particular, is dynamite value.
The winemaker of this particular vintage was Wim Truter, who was then Head Winemaker for KWV. In November 2019, Wim was appointed as head winemaker for Meerlust.
But back to the wine…
👃🏼 The nose is more intense than an episode of Prison Break, with lovely graphite, cedarwood, blackcurrant, cinnamon, and oreganum elements.
👄 A delightful mid-weighted blend of charmingly understated red and black fruits. There are fairly staunch tannins on the tail, but these will integrate better over time. If you feel like drinking it now, at least one can rest in the fact that these tannins are well accompanied by an impressive tail end of lingering berry fruit.
🔬 The fruit is from all over. Wellington, Stellenbosch, Paarl… and the blend is as eclectic as its source regions:
48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Shiraz, 12% Tempranillo, 7% Petit Verdot, 4% Petite Sirah, 3% Cabernet Franc, 2% Merlot, 1% Malbec.
The wine was tank-fermented, before being racked into barrels for malolactic conversion. It was then removed from lees and matured in French oak barrels for 18 months (35% new oak).
💸💸 ZAR135.00 (as of January 2021)