#286 Wildeberg Coterie Cabernet Franc Malbec 2021


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The Wildeberg outfit are a delightfully creative bunch who have made their home on the very southern end of the Franschhoek Valley – in what is collectively called the Franschoek Southern rim. Their small estate sits up against the Hottentots Holland Mountains, and from that perch they produce not only a range of estate wines, but also some rather lovely bottles made with fruit sourced from prized vineyards around the Cape Winelands.
Winemaker JD Russouw and his team have managed to produce something of a conundrum in this bottle, in that the fruit mix is that of Cabernet Franc and Malbec; all sourced from the rather warm regions of Paarl and Franschhoek, and bottled at a rather high 14.5% alcohol. And yet when one gets into the bottle, the profile of the wine is rather suprising…
Of course, 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, I’ve left you my tasting notes and some technical specs:


👃🏼 A fairly serious nose that blends herbs and fruit. blackcurrant fruit, and raspberry, with herbal traces of fennel, heather, and violets.
👄 The palate carries surprisingly zingy raspberry acidity and red cherry fruit which races out the gate, tailed by more ambling black fruit elements. That burst of berry brightness can seem a little tart at first, but the sweeter black fruit slowly spreads across the palate, balancing it all quite nicely. The tail end features a lovely little floral burst, with some more of those herbal fennel type flourishes. Tannins are fairly fine, most likely due to the very gentle treatment of the fruit, and the fact that everything is done as whole bunch.


🔬 All fruit is hand-harvested in February from selected sites in Franschhoek and Paarl. Both cultivars are fermented as whole bunch. There is no crushing prior to fermentation. Once spontaneous fermentation commences, the cellar team perform one pump per day. The components are racked to French and Austrian oak demi-muid, new and old,

for 20 months before the blend is decided. This blend is then allowed to marry for 6 weeks prior to coarse filtration and bottling on the farm.
Wine of Origin Coastal Region
| Alc 14.5% | RS 1.8g | TA 5.6g | pH 3.47 |
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