EP 75 Four South African Wines

2001 Warwick Estate Reserve Red

2002 Warwick Three Cape Ladies Red

2001 Rudera Cabernet Sauvignon

2003 Thelema Cabernet Sauvignon

Today Gary talks about four wines from an underrated region, South Africa. He reviews wines from the Stellenbosch region of South Africa. A new QOD and a new feature for you at the end. Watch for it!

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Alexandre Savoie

Unfortunately I have to pick 2 bottles for the simple reason that I bought them specifically to drink for both my daughters’ 21 birthdays, the first is a magnum of Alion 2005, the second a magnum of Delas La Landonne Cote Rotie.
Now rating this episode is tough because I am 5 yrs later and your new stuff is a notch above, so I’ll give you an 88 which is good but a little under the mythical bar of 90, if I was rating this 5 yrs ago I would’ve probably given you a 90.

Tags: red wines, review, South Africa, Video, wine, wines

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  • DaBear

    Gary,

    Had some good South African wines from the Paarl Valley. Can you review some wines from that region?

    Steelers are better than the Jets. Are not they the defending Super Bowl Champions…?

  • DaBear

    Gary,

    Had some good South African wines from the Paarl Valley. Can you review some wines from that region?

    Steelers are better than the Jets. Are not they the defending Super Bowl Champions…?

  • Craig K

    Gary,
    I’d rate this episode an 88 or so. JohnM said it best: Watchable but not memorable. Always better when you take a few extra minutes to address viewer questions/comments. Most cherished wine in my cellar is an ’89 Jaboulet La Chapelle Hermitage, because it carries fond memories of our initial learning of Rhone wines in the early 90’s — and there were so many great ones to choose from between the 89 & 90 vintages. Have to mention runner up cherished wine is the ’91 Dominus because it was the year my wife and I got married.

  • Craig K

    Gary,
    I’d rate this episode an 88 or so. JohnM said it best: Watchable but not memorable. Always better when you take a few extra minutes to address viewer questions/comments. Most cherished wine in my cellar is an ’89 Jaboulet La Chapelle Hermitage, because it carries fond memories of our initial learning of Rhone wines in the early 90’s — and there were so many great ones to choose from between the 89 & 90 vintages. Have to mention runner up cherished wine is the ’91 Dominus because it was the year my wife and I got married.

  • sebastien

    interesting website and videos..

    here is a list of the best south africans you can find today,

    5 top whites
    1. palladius eben sadie 2003,2004 and 2005
    2. springfield estate methode ancienne chardonnay 2002 ,2004
    3. lammershoek chenin blanc barriques 2004
    4. Scali white blend , chenin and grenache 2005
    5. vergelegen white 2003

    5 top reds.
    1. columella eben sadie 2003,2004
    2. observatory syrah 2004
    3. boekenhoutskloof cabernet sauvingon 2003
    4. Vriesenhof pinot noir 2003
    5. Rudera cabernet Sauvingon 2000

    and the best pinotage(unique to south africa)

    1.scali pinotage 2003.

    taste those and come back to me..
    p.s eben sadie has recently made dits del terra priorat 2003 ( voted best old world wine )

    pps.. dom perignon 1998 is crap..only 1990 and 1996 are good. ( also NEVER keep any wine in your fridge!!!!)

    cheers

  • sebastien

    interesting website and videos..

    here is a list of the best south africans you can find today,

    5 top whites
    1. palladius eben sadie 2003,2004 and 2005
    2. springfield estate methode ancienne chardonnay 2002 ,2004
    3. lammershoek chenin blanc barriques 2004
    4. Scali white blend , chenin and grenache 2005
    5. vergelegen white 2003

    5 top reds.
    1. columella eben sadie 2003,2004
    2. observatory syrah 2004
    3. boekenhoutskloof cabernet sauvingon 2003
    4. Vriesenhof pinot noir 2003
    5. Rudera cabernet Sauvingon 2000

    and the best pinotage(unique to south africa)

    1.scali pinotage 2003.

    taste those and come back to me..
    p.s eben sadie has recently made dits del terra priorat 2003 ( voted best old world wine )

    pps.. dom perignon 1998 is crap..only 1990 and 1996 are good. ( also NEVER keep any wine in your fridge!!!!)

    cheers

  • David Canada

    I’d give it an 87….but I have advantage of having see episode 138-260 already.
    QOTD – Hmmmm, probably the 1970 Domaine de Chevalier….I just love this wine.

  • David Canada

    I’d give it an 87….but I have advantage of having see episode 138-260 already.
    QOTD – Hmmmm, probably the 1970 Domaine de Chevalier….I just love this wine.

  • Michael H

    Just got a chance to watch this episode. Great questions of the day around these episodes.

    QOTD: My prized bottle in my collection and why — 1996 Ch. Lafite Rothschild. I wanted to get a “Parker Perfect” about 7-8 years ago to have in my collection. I have since deemed it a bottle to open with my son when he turns 21. That gives it 20 more years of cellaring. I hope I can wait.

  • Michael H

    Just got a chance to watch this episode. Great questions of the day around these episodes.

    QOTD: My prized bottle in my collection and why — 1996 Ch. Lafite Rothschild. I wanted to get a “Parker Perfect” about 7-8 years ago to have in my collection. I have since deemed it a bottle to open with my son when he turns 21. That gives it 20 more years of cellaring. I hope I can wait.

  • GrapeStuff

    Lovin’ S.A. thanks to a lot of your encouragement and I agree – its a great region that is definitely under the radar. I have been consistently trying to buy a bottle or two from S.A. for the past few months and have really enjoyed it.

  • GrapeStuff

    Lovin’ S.A. thanks to a lot of your encouragement and I agree – its a great region that is definitely under the radar. I have been consistently trying to buy a bottle or two from S.A. for the past few months and have really enjoyed it.

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  • http://www.myspace.com/independencebear Chris

    QOTD-

    I won a 3L of 2002 Insignia in a raffle (bought 2 Le Mistrals). Not sure when I will open it. Maybe if I ever get married. Any ladies out there? LOL

  • http://www.myspace.com/independencebear Chris

    QOTD-

    I won a 3L of 2002 Insignia in a raffle (bought 2 Le Mistrals). Not sure when I will open it. Maybe if I ever get married. Any ladies out there? LOL

  • thefanjestic

    Episode rating – B+ 89 points

    Qotd: Chateau Haut Brion 1999 – my wife and I openned a bottle before we decided to start the journey of making our daughter. I have since gone back and bought another bottle for when we make a second edition. ;)

  • thefanjestic

    Episode rating – B+ 89 points

    Qotd: Chateau Haut Brion 1999 – my wife and I openned a bottle before we decided to start the journey of making our daughter. I have since gone back and bought another bottle for when we make a second edition. ;)

  • John__J

    Great episode Gary, love you’re encouragement for people to continue to try new things. 2 things which most people haven’t tried that I would love to see you do on here would be: A tasting on different charbono’s, and 1 on vin jaune’s.
    Which brings me to your qotd. The most prized wine in my cellar isn’t there yet, but will be finally in about 2 or 3 days. It’s a Caves Jean Bourdy 2002 vin jaune. I’ve been reading about these wines for a couple years, and how they are made. How rare they are, how long they take to make and age before release, and how they are only made in the French wine region of Jura. Most people haven’t even heard of the Jura region, much less their vin jaune’s. Been trying to find a distributor in my state that carries them, and had to look for a long time. No distributor’s listed in the beverage journal, had any vin jaune’s, and I couldn’t find any place that had 1, so I assumed they either weren’t coming to the U.S. or at least my state. Then about 6 months ago out of the blue, this guy pop’s his head in my restaurant and drops off a little catalog. Turn’s out he works for a very small wine distributor, not listed in the beverage journal [quite a few aren’t, sure you know this, and i thought i knew who most of those companies were], that focused on wines and wine areas, not being picked up my most other distributors. There was even a whole section on Jura, whereas other distributor’s don’t even have a single wine from Jura! There were even 2 vin jaune’s on there, A Tissot 99 vintage, which was cheaper, and bottled in a 500ml bottle. Then there was the more expensive one, the Caves Jean Bourdy 2002, which was bottled in the traditional Clavelin 620ml bottles. The traditional clavelin bottle was part of the allure for me too, since it’s the only wine bottled in such a bottle. I thought those clavelin’s weren’t exported to the U.S., but maybe it slipped in under the radar, who knows? But, it’s whats inside that counts. So I went online to check out reviews and get info on the 2. Check out Jean Bourdy’s wines out on any website, garagistewine.com for instance. [i have no affiliation w any websites.] Apparently Jean Bourdy, this unknown winery to me has been making wine in the family for 14 generations since the 1700’s. But even better, sommelier’s in France consider it among the top 3 wineries in all of France that leads in both red and white wine’s. The other 2 are Chateau Haut-Brion, and Domain de la Romanee Conti. They went even further to say it may be the best of the 3. They did say that Jean Bourdy’s 1947 Chateau Chalon blanc may be single greatest white wine in the world of the 20th century. Their 1865 had received pretty much the same praise for the 19th century, which is still drinking well apparently. Red wines get similar praise from them, and review after review that I have read, is among the most stellar wine reviews I’ve ever read. And no it’s not cheap, but its probably a tenth of the price as those 1st growth Bordeaux’s and grand cru Burgundies. It’s just so damn hard to find. I did find out there is 1 liquor store downtown selling the Tissot vin jaune. But after hearing about the esteem of the Bourdy, and that being the only 1 of the 2 sold in the clavelin, I lost interest in that one fast, compared to the Bourdy. Of course that didn’t make getting the budget from my boss any easier in ordering it, a whole different story. So anyway, after trying for almost 2 years, and I can find things working in the business that the avg consumer can’t, I’ll finally have that wine for myself in a few days, and probably be the only person in the state with one on their wine list. Until someone else from my state reads this of course lol. So that’s my most prized bottle as of yet. Now I just have to wait many years to drink it, to try to have it at it’s peak.

  • John J.

    Great episode Gary, love you’re encouragement for people to continue to try new things. 2 things which most people haven’t tried that I would love to see you do on here would be: A tasting on different charbono’s, and 1 on vin jaune’s.
    Which brings me to your qotd. The most prized wine in my cellar isn’t there yet, but will be finally in about 2 or 3 days. It’s a Caves Jean Bourdy 2002 vin jaune. I’ve been reading about these wines for a couple years, and how they are made. How rare they are, how long they take to make and age before release, and how they are only made in the French wine region of Jura. Most people haven’t even heard of the Jura region, much less their vin jaune’s. Been trying to find a distributor in my state that carries them, and had to look for a long time. No distributor’s listed in the beverage journal, had any vin jaune’s, and I couldn’t find any place that had 1, so I assumed they either weren’t coming to the U.S. or at least my state. Then about 6 months ago out of the blue, this guy pop’s his head in my restaurant and drops off a little catalog. Turn’s out he works for a very small wine distributor, not listed in the beverage journal [quite a few aren’t, sure you know this, and i thought i knew who most of those companies were], that focused on wines and wine areas, not being picked up my most other distributors. There was even a whole section on Jura, whereas other distributor’s don’t even have a single wine from Jura! There were even 2 vin jaune’s on there, A Tissot 99 vintage, which was cheaper, and bottled in a 500ml bottle. Then there was the more expensive one, the Caves Jean Bourdy 2002, which was bottled in the traditional Clavelin 620ml bottles. The traditional clavelin bottle was part of the allure for me too, since it’s the only wine bottled in such a bottle. I thought those clavelin’s weren’t exported to the U.S., but maybe it slipped in under the radar, who knows? But, it’s whats inside that counts. So I went online to check out reviews and get info on the 2. Check out Jean Bourdy’s wines out on any website, garagistewine.com for instance. [i have no affiliation w any websites.] Apparently Jean Bourdy, this unknown winery to me has been making wine in the family for 14 generations since the 1700’s. But even better, sommelier’s in France consider it among the top 3 wineries in all of France that leads in both red and white wine’s. The other 2 are Chateau Haut-Brion, and Domain de la Romanee Conti. They went even further to say it may be the best of the 3. They did say that Jean Bourdy’s 1947 Chateau Chalon blanc may be single greatest white wine in the world of the 20th century. Their 1865 had received pretty much the same praise for the 19th century, which is still drinking well apparently. Red wines get similar praise from them, and review after review that I have read, is among the most stellar wine reviews I’ve ever read. And no it’s not cheap, but its probably a tenth of the price as those 1st growth Bordeaux’s and grand cru Burgundies. It’s just so damn hard to find. I did find out there is 1 liquor store downtown selling the Tissot vin jaune. But after hearing about the esteem of the Bourdy, and that being the only 1 of the 2 sold in the clavelin, I lost interest in that one fast, compared to the Bourdy. Of course that didn’t make getting the budget from my boss any easier in ordering it, a whole different story. So anyway, after trying for almost 2 years, and I can find things working in the business that the avg consumer can’t, I’ll finally have that wine for myself in a few days, and probably be the only person in the state with one on their wine list. Until someone else from my state reads this of course lol. So that’s my most prized bottle as of yet. Now I just have to wait many years to drink it, to try to have it at it’s peak.

  • corkscrew

    Gary almost said ..Yay-ner-chuk..it was close..87-89 quick time to try 4 Cabs, I have found South Africian hit or miss, recently had some wines at a wine expo from Greece and was really impressed. off top of my head..a signed mag of 2004 Caldwell Silver which will last some 20+ yrs, will open with my son in college gives me a grandchild and 2007 Linne Calodo Cherry Red RP-96 and some Kosta Browne. http://www.winelx.com

  • Anonymous

    Most cherished wine is a bottle of 2003 Chateau Le Puy from the Cotes Du Francs. It IS the Wine that truly got me SERIOUS about wine!

  • http://www.discoveryofwine.com Alexandre Savoie

    Unfortunately I have to pick 2 bottles for the simple reason that I bought them specifically to drink for both my daughters’ 21 birthdays, the first is a magnum of Alion 2005, the second a magnum of Delas La Landonne Cote Rotie.
    Now rating this episode is tough because I am 5 yrs later and your new stuff is a notch above, so I’ll give you an 88 which is good but a little under the mythical bar of 90, if I was rating this 5 yrs ago I would’ve probably given you a 90.

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