Tim James: Some winelands myths debunked

Where do people find their strange ideas and fragments of historical misinformation? I daresay I have one or two cranky and mistaken notions of my own, but those, of course, aren’t making me raise an eyebrow (not to mention simultaneously scratch my forehead, heave a deep sigh and shrug my shoulders – it’s a physical […]

December 8, 2014
by Tim James
with 2 Comments

Tim James: Torres Viña Sol – delicious and different

Luckily for those of us wine lovers with pockets in which the exchange-rate rand is getting prohibitively light, there’s plenty of local stuff to provide pleasure, interest and even excitement. Though some of it is not exactly cheap (except by international standards) and some is now getting hard to find. Neither price nor rarity has […]

November 25, 2014
by Tim James
with 0 Comments

Tim James: On the magic mountain that is Skurfberg

There are many wine-growing mountains in the Cape winelands, with the best-known names from Stellenbosch: Helderberg, Simonsberg and, perhaps, Schapenberg. All have something distinctive to say, unless muted by overripe fruit and heavy-handed winemaking, although the language of our landscapes is one that we are continually learning to better comprehend. As for other mountains, the […]

November 17, 2014
by Tim James
with 1 Comment

Tim James: Interview with Andrew Jefford

It’s nine years since Andrew Jefford – eminent British wine writer and critic – was last in South Africa. He’s just spent something over a week here, tasting hard (with also a bit of playing at the Swartland Revolution, his final stop), making a number of winery visits and doing some category tastings, chardonnay most […]

November 11, 2014
by Tim James
with 1 Comment

Tim James: Praise due to DeMorgenzon

I’ve been dredging the internet to no avail, unable to check my wholly fallible memory that it was Sydney Smith, the nineteenth-century English clergyman, writer and wit, who suggested that one should “dine with the rich, but go to the play with the poor – for they are capable of joy”. Google doesn’t seem to […]

November 3, 2014
by Tim James
with 0 Comments

Tim James: Fewer 5-Star wines in Platter’s – a necessary recalibration

So what are the surprises in this year’s list of Platter’s 5-star wines? Perhaps, firstly, that there are just 50 of them (plus one new brandy – only new brandies were tasted this year). That’s down from 80 wines last year. It’s a good move on the whole to tighten up standards, though I do […]

October 27, 2014
by Tim James
with 0 Comments

Tim James: On Belfield and Elgin’s potential for high-quality reds

When Paul Cluver Estate some years back ceased bottling their cabernet grapes under their own label – to concentrate on whites and pinot – I thought it a good idea. Red wines from Elgin (pinot apart) seemed largely expendable, despite occasional exceptions – with the rarity of the exceptions making the point. That’s not to […]

October 20, 2014
by Tim James
with 6 Comments

Tim James: Cape Winemakers Guild membership scrutinised

This year’s Cape Winemakers Guild Auction is now done – very successfully, and with encouraging suggestions that there are a number of rich people out there, including local and foreign diners at certain restaurants, willing to spend a lot of money on Cape wine (much more once Mr Pick of the Butcher Shop & Grill […]

October 13, 2014
by Tim James
with 0 Comments
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Wine magazine was published from October 1993 until September 2011 & now lives on in digital form as Winemag.co.za. We cover everything to do with SA fine wine.

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