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Blackwater Hinterland Cinsaut 2015

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The reason Cinsaut is enjoying such a resurgence right now is that it provides a welcome counterpoint to the wines of weight and power which held sway until not so long ago. I do wonder, however, if the variety has the inherent complexity to deliver greatness regularly and on a wide scale – it has been planted here since the middle of the 19th century and was at one point the country’s most planted grape occupying nearly a third of the national vineyard but even so has largely failed to capture the world’s imagination in any major way.

Blackwater Hinterland Cinsaut 2015
No airs and graces.

The 2014 vintage of Cinsaut as made by Francois Haasbroek with grapes from a prized Darling vineyard under his Blackwater label impressed enormously (see here) but the follow-up 2015, while very likeable, is not quite in the same league. The nose shows red cherry, pomegranate and some floral character while the palate is sweet fruited with moderate acidity and quite soft tannins – the tension and detail which the 2014 possessed seems to be missing. Approximate retail price: R210 a bottle.

Editor’s rating: 90/100.

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1 COMMENT

  1. I really liked this wine when I had it near the end of last year. Perhaps the 2015 vintage is just unfurling a bit differently to the 2014? Perhaps it needs more time?

    As to the complexity of Cinsaut: most “serious” Cinsauts are generally released earlier than, for instance, their Cabernet counterparts. Perhaps a few years in bottle will add more complexity. It’s still early days for the Cinsaut revival in our country.

    Many supposedly more complex and full-bodied wines never actually reaches that window of supreme drinkability (they remain more “tasting wines” than “drinking wines”), no matter how long they are matured for. Last night my wife and I smashed a bottle of Luddite Saboteur (white) 2016 and I specifically noted how difficult it was to drink the wine slowly. (It’s a young, primary wine, give it time to develop in the glass, Dude. Oops, too late..!)

    But, like the Saboteur, I think that there is more than just smashability to our better new-wave Cinsauts. But only time will tell. Our wine club, The Noble Rotters, is tasting a range of Cinsauts blind this Saturday and I can promise you there won’t be anything left after dinner.

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