#263 Van Wyk Family Wines Riesling 2021

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Justin Van Wyk is an interesting mix of Euro-centric winemaking juxtaposed with decidedly more local wine styles. As the former winemaker and current cellarmaster for Constantia Glen, he has spent 15 years working almost exclusively with Bordeaux cultivars. But it is when one turns one’s attention to his own range of wines – The Van Wyk Family Range that we see a more obvious celebration of South Africa’s viticultural heritage.
The Van Wyk range includes a Chenin blanc made from vines between 30 and 50 years old, and also features a Cape White Blend that uses Roussanne, Riesling and Viognier to back up the lead singers of Chenin and Chardonnay. On the red wine side, he produces a cool climate Syrah from Elgin, and delivers a supremely light-footed Cinsault-led red blend that is supported by Syrah and Grenache.
But the wine that grabbed us most viscerally was the Van Wyk Stellenbosch Riesling, made from wines that were planted back in 1982. Now, if you have yet to sign up for your Monthly HanDrinksSolo Wine Subscription then you’ll have to hunt this wine down in your own time. But until then, here are my tasting notes and some technical specs on the wine in the bottle:


👃🏼 A fascinating mix of the more classic marmalade, lemon blossom, peach preserve, and a hint of kerosene, alongside less riesling-common garnishes of fennel, & nougat.
👄 That complex intro amply frames the vibrant palate of bright seville orange  & nectarine. A gentle touch of oak of nutmeg on the tail.

Technical Specs:

🔬 Wine of Origin Stellenbosch. The fruit is sourced from a south-west facing Stellenbosch vineyard planted in 1982. The trellising can best be described as an “elevated bushvine”, running along a single wire just above the ground. After harvest, the fruit is whole-bunch pressed, and spontaneous fermentation commences. The final wine is made up of a combination of amphorae- and barrel-fermented parcels, with 14% being a back-blended, barrel-fermented 2020 component.
Alcohol 13.0% | Total Acid 6.6g/l | Residual Sugar 1.8g/litre
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