#318 Glendirk Sauvignon Blanc 2017
🔬 Wine of Origin Constantia. 100% Sauvignon Blanc. Made by winemaker Matt Day.
All parcels begin their fermentation in stainless steel tanks, using only native yeasts. When fermentation is 65% complete, selected ferments are moved to neutral oak barrels. Parcels are selected specifically for their ability to stand up to oak maturation. Five barrels are filled, and the wine is allowed to mature on its fine lees for nine months in a combination of 3rd and 4th fill barrels.
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Constantia Ward in South Africa is an interesting little patch of land for a whole bunch of reasons. For starters, it is stretched out over the footholls of the Constantiaberg and the hindquarters of Table Mountain – one of the eight wonders of the world. Secondly, it’s the region with the longest history of winemaking; dating back to 1659. Thirdly, it is one of only wine wards that does not form part of a larger wine district, but rather exists as a stand-alone wine production area. It’s also the only region in South Africa that first gained global fame for its sweet wines.
But while sweet wines will always be part of Constantia’s history (and continous present), the producers in the valley seem all united in their confidence in Sauvignon Blanc to carry them into the future; both as a producer of supremely accessible ready-to-drink offerings, but ALSO as the source of some incredibly high quality age-worthy bottlings.
And no estate does this more explicitly that Klein Constantia, who offer four Sauvignon Blancs under their own label; at varying levels of quality. Klein Constantia winemaker Matt Day is one of the most respected Sauvignon Blanc specialists in the country, and so it is no surprise that he is also the winemaker that some estates call on to vinify the fruit from their vineyards (in the absence of their own cellar facilities). Today’s wine of the day; the GlenDirk Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2017 is made with fruit from exactly such a vineyard.
Aside from being a delightful expression of what Constantia Sauvignon Blanc can be, the fact that it has been cellar-aged for seven years prior to release means that is ALSO serves as another useful exhibit in the growing mountain of evidence that Constantia Sauvignon Blanc is well worth giving a few years to mature before drinking.
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:
👃🏼 A lovely open nose of orange marmalade, lime leaf, lanolin, mango, maroela walnuts, nutmeg and salted caramel.
👄 The palate is pleasantly weighted, with concentrated notes of lime marmalade and oranges. Sweeter almost tropical fruit emerges after a little time in the glass, which is complicated by lovely elements of toast and salted farm butter. A delightfully rich and brooding example of what sauvignon Blanc can become if given the time.
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