Ashbourne Sandstone 2007

Sauvignon Blanc with extra vooma.

As featured in the April issue of Business Day WANTED: “Sauvignon Blanc-plus,” says Anthony Hamilton Russell of Ashbourne Sandstone 2007, which is to sell this wine very short indeed. Better known as the owner of Hemel-en-Aarde Valley property Hamilton Russell Vineyards, Hamilton Russell founded nearby Ashbourne in 1996 convinced that he could make a version of Pinotage that was both classic and individual, maiden vintage being 2001.

A white followed in due course, the first bottling being the 2006 and the thinking here is to create “a long-lived, lower alcohol, un-wooded wine from a blend of white grapes all grown on free-draining Table Mountain Sandstone”. The 2007 is a blend of 85% Sauvignon Blanc and 15% Chardonnay, the wine having an alcohol by volume of 12.97%. Hamilton Russell says he wants the wine to be “edgy and nervous” and hence Sauvignon Blanc grown on light-structured sandstone being the major component. Chardonnay (and Semillon in other vintages) are included in order to contribute to the age-worthiness and palate weight without competing with the aromatics. The 2007 is a wine of great complexity showing citrus and green melon as well as pleasing developed character.  Price per bottle: R200. Tel 028 312 3595,

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