Monthly Archives: August 2012

Wine Decanter

What a beautiful decanter, don’t you think?

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Four new gourmet wines celebrate Nederburg’s past

Nederburg has created four new gourmet wines to be sold exclusively through specialist retailers and fine dining establishments.  Known collectively as the Heritage Anthology, they are individually named in honour of a personality who has played a major role in shaping the winery’s reputation.


The 2009 Motorcycle Marvel that honours the legendary winemaker Günter Brözel, who was at Nederburg from 1956 to 1989, is a three-way Rhône-style blend of Grenache, Carignan and Shiraz. The first two come from old bush vines in Paarl, while the Shiraz has been sourced from an award-winning block in Philadelphia. Fermentation took place in open vats with extended skin contact to enrich colour and flavour, says current cellar master Razvan Macici. No new wood was used for maturation. “We used a combination of 300 litre and 500 litre French and Romanian second-, third- and fourth-fill barrels to ensure a delicate oak extraction.”


The wine was aged in barrel for two years. The result, he says, is a “rich and intense explosion of flavour with spicy, peppery berry and sweet fruit characters, ripe and silky tannins and an excellent integration between fruit and wood.”


The 2009 Brew Master is a Bordeaux-style blend that commemorates Johann Graue, who revolutionised winemaking in South Africa when he acquired Nederburg in 1937 with his efforts to isolate top-performing vines for reproduction and his introduction of cold fermentation techniques.

Led by Cabernet Sauvignon and including Merlot, Petit Verdot and Cabernet Franc, all individually vinified, the grapes were fermented on the skins in a combination of open fermenters and stainless steel tanks. The wine was aged in new and older 300 litre French barrels for 24 months before bottling.


Macici says it is very classical in style with “savoury, complex aromas and flavours”.

Both reds have been structured to mature for up to 15 years but show excellent integration between fruit and wood so can be enjoyed now.


The 2011 Young Airhawk is a wooded Sauvignon blanc that pays tribute to Johann Graue’s son, Arnold, who, like his father, introduced many technical innovations to Nederburg and enhanced his father’s award-winning reputation. He died at 29 in a light aircraft crash.

The grapes for this wooded Sauvignon blanc were sourced from vineyards near Gansbaai, Darling and Durbanville, each offering different facets of the varietal’s character.  Grapes were destemmed and the juice fermented in a combination of second- and third-fill small oak, using 228 litre and 300 litre barrels.  Fermentation temperatures were monitored in each barrel, with the wine kept on the lees for 10 months, stirred regularly to add creaminess and complexity.


“Layers of green figs, asparagus and minerality on the nose and palate integrate very well with the wood.  It’s fresh, crisp and zesty with a creamy texture and can age for five to seven years,” says Macici.


The 2011 Anchorman Chenin Blanc is named for Nederburg’s founder Philippus Wolvaart, who bought the farm in 1791 and planted Chenin Blanc, amongst other varietals. Macici describes it as a “most interesting and expressive wine that is a blend of very differently vinifed components and that succeeds in combining a bracing freshness with complexity.” Fruit was sourced from low-yielding, dry-farmed old bush vines in Darling, Durbanville and Paarl.


“One portion was fermented in second- and third-fill 300 litre and 500 litre barrels. A second component was fermented in stainless steel tanks, while a third was fermented in very old, large vats and the remainder involved a fermentation technique usually reserved for red wines. Called carbonic maceration, it allows whole bunches, neither crushed nor pressed, to ferment spontaneously, and the wines tend to be light and fruity.”


Macici chose the technique for the freshness it would impart to the wine.


“This Chenin blanc is very reminiscent of ripe fruits, especially apricots and oranges, with floral hints and traces of raisin and spice with a vibrant mineral spine.”


He believes it has the potential to age for up to 10 years.


The wines are expected to retail for around R97 for the whites and R105 for the reds.

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What a beautiful wine cellar. What do you think?

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Like music to your ears…

What do you think of this wine rack?

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Wine Cellar….

What do you think of this entrance to a wine cellar?

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To warm up this winter, try some of the best Un-chillfiltered Single Malt Whiskies from Islay.

The Bunnahabhain 12, 18 and 25YO series.

Read more… vinoteque

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What do you think of this great wine cellar?

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Wine Cellar

What a beautiful wine cellar… What do you think?

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Undersea cellaring service preparing to launch

Here’s a great story on, on the world’s first underwater wine cellaring service.

The  undersea wine cellaring service is 1,000m deep and 150km off the Atlantic Coast and will open next year.

Frank Labeyrie, of Chateau du Coureau in Côtes de Bordeaux Cadillac, hopes to open his cellaring service, Vin Mille Lieu Sous Les Mers – a pun on the French title of the Jules Verne’s classic, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea – in mid 2013

Labeyrie believes that the ocean’s constant cool temperatures, zero oxygen and zero light will help the wines age slowly, so keeping intensity of fruit for longer, and deepening flavour.

He has aged 10,000 bottles of his own wine in the Arcachon Bay for the past five years, at a depth of only 5m, but is certain the benefits will increase with the depth.

The wine will be secured in reinforced stainless steel boxes, capable of withstanding pressure of up to one ton per cubic metre, secured to the ocean floor, and each equipped with cameras and a tracking device, and with a wax seal over the bottles’ original corks and capsules.

Read more…

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Featured Vinoteque Wine

The Alto Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 is the featured vinoteque wine.

Tasting notes:

Dark ruby. Nose – Cigar box with ripe cherries and plum aromas and a hint of mint.  Palate – Cherry sweetness comes to the fore but is balanced by tannins, with oak an vanilla on the aftertaste

Read more and  order the wine from the Bergkelder Vinoteque

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