Pinotage is one of those uniquely SA inventions which as far as I am concerned brings a whole lot more pleasure to life than the Kreepy Krauly and dolosse.
Words by Greg Landman
I am not trivialising those but they don’t mean much when compared to the pleasures of sipping a superb Pinotage after a hectic day doing whatever it is you do.
Pinotage is a hybrid developed in the 1920s by Prof Perold, the first professor of Viticulture at Stellenbosch University when he crossed Pinot Noir with the grape variety then called Hermitage and today known as Cinsault.
The combination of the finicky but delicious Pinot with the robust characteristics of Cinsault results in a delicious deep dark red wine with some smoky flavours, very much like Shiraz. Today it is made all over SA wine country and in some others, like New Zealand, as well.
At the recent ABSA Top Ten Pinotage Awards, the best in SA were recognised at a function at Cavalli in Somerset West.
The Top 10
Delheim Pinotage 2012 – WO Stellenbosch, Winemaker Altus Treurnicht
Diemersfontein Carpe Diem Reserve 2015- WO Wellington, Winemaker Francoise Roode
Flagstone Writer’s Block Single Vineyard Pinotage 2015 –WO Breedekloof, Winemaker Gerhard Swart
Kanonkop Pinotage 2012 – WO Simonsberg-Stellenbosch, Winemaker Abrie Beeslaar
Lanzerac Pionier Pinotage 2014 –WO Jonkershoek Valley in Stellenbosch, Winemaker Wynand Lategan
Môreson MKM 2015 –Franschhoek cellar, WO Stellenbosch, Winemaker Clayton Reabow
Neil Ellis Bottelary Hills Pinotage 2015 –WO Stellenbosch, Winemaker Warren Ellis
Stellenbosch Vineyards Bushvine Pinotage 2015 – WO Stellenbosch, Winemaker Abraham de Villiers
La Cave Pinotage 2016 – Wellington Wines, Winemakers Francois van Niekerk & Chris Smit
Windmeul Pinotage Reserve 2015 – WO Paarl/Coastal, Winemaker Abraham van Heerden
As the wine writer for Country Life magazine for the last 15 years, Greg has met and interviewed more than 150 of the country’s top wine makers. His articles offer unique insights into where to eat, what to drink, and where to go all over the Western Cape. With his dining companion Beryl Ormsby Browne, he has also reviewed more than 60 country restaurants for the magazine and has been a reviewer for the prestigious Eat Out Guide for 12 years. His passion for everything the winelands has to offer has led him into the world of wine tours. To find out more, visit his website Magic Grape Tours.