| SA Wine Ratings, News, Opinion & Analysis

Alain Graillot Crozes-Hermitage 2011

July 29, 2015
by Christian
in What I Drank Last Night
with 2 Comments
Pitch perfect.

Pitch perfect.

Are we under-rating our new-wave reds? And are local consumers paying enough for them? By way of calibration, a bottle of Alain Graillot Crozes-Hermitage 2011, R295 a bottle from Joostenberg Deli in Stellenbosch.

Crozes a lesser appellation to Hermitage itself, Graillot one of the better growers, 2011 a good but not great vintage.

So how did the wine look? Red and black fruit, garrigue, cured meat and white pepper on the nose. Medium-bodied, a lovely line of acidity (fresh but not hard or tart as is often the case with local wines picked early) and gently grippy tannins (whole-bunch ferment in evidence but not excessively so). Not necessarily a great wine but oh, so true to itself.

No doubt local wine has seen significant quality improvements in recent times, but we must guard against getting carried away when it comes to both ratings and price. The market has a great way of determining pecking order.

Score: 91/100.

Tagged , ,

Share this post


  1. GrantAugust 5, 2015 at 2:15 pmReply

    Nice note. Just beautiful wines, Graillot. Effortless and assured. The self confidence of something/someoe with nothing to prove. I’ve never been disappointed by a bottle of Graillot.

  2. RyanJuly 30, 2015 at 7:38 amReply

    I had to search for the term “garrigue” and found this nice description – Garrigue refers to the low-growing vegetation on the limestone hills of the Mediterranean coast, not the limestone itself. There are a bunch of bushy, fragrant plants that grow wild there, such as juniper, thyme, rosemary and lavender, and garrigue refers to the sum of them. Think herbes de Provence, or a mix of fresh minty-herbal notes with more pungent, floral fragrances.
    In a South African context and in my wine tasting memory bank I relate that aroma to “fynbos”. A great similar local expression to the wine you described is the Strandveld Syrah.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


four × one =

AEC v1.0.4
Error, no Ad ID set! Check your syntax!
newlstter2 Get the biggest stories of the past fortnight sent directly to your inbox. subscribe
Wine magazine was published from October 1993 until September 2011 and now lives on in digital form as We cover everything to do with South African wine.
XSLT Plugin by Leo Jiang