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Boekenhoutskloof Cabernet Sauvignon 2008

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Against the rule.
Bucks the trend.

If we measure vintages by how serious reds shaped in Stellenbosch and immediate surrounds, 2008 is generally considered “challenging” as a consequence of rain during harvest but Boekenhoutskloof was evidently on top of its game when it comes to its Cabernet Sauvignon from own vineyards in Franschhoek.

It’s pretty full on: Four pickings across 17 days; maturation in 100% new French oak lasting 27 months; abv 14.89%.

Rated 5 Stars in the 2011 guide of Platter’s, it’s looking pretty damn fine right now with both primary fruit but also the start of the complexity that only comes with bottle age and  I would proffer it offers optimal drinking although it will probably sit on a plateau of development for another five to 10 years.

Mostly red but also black fruit, olives, subtle vanilla and spice plus the start of some intriguing developed character – raw meat, tomato cocktail, a certain maritime character.

On the palate, great richness but also freshness. Fruit still  intact but tannins pretty much resolved. A wine of real depth with a gently savoury finish. Super stuff.

Score: 94/100.

Footnote: Just recalled that I drank this wine just under a year ago (see here) and rated it a little higher now than then. Suffice to say, it’s good to go.

3 COMMENTS

  1. if it’s still showing primary fruit and only at the start of complexity now, Christian, why do you say it’s optimal drinking time is now, and maybe the next five years? Those sound to me like contradictory statements. What’s wrong with gaining more of the complexity it’s only at the start of? Or do you only enjoy wines with youthful fruit? (A perfectly tenable taste, of course. ) I’ve found that good Boekenhoutskloof cabs can be great at ten years or more.

  2. Hi Tim, It’s that sense of a modern SA wine (even Boekenhoutskloof) heading towards decrepitude fast. I recall no lesser figure than Paul Boutinot of Waterkloof saying to me a few years back that he enjoyed wines younger (and I’m now paraphrasing) because you had to wrestle with them rather than older when they reveal all their obvious pleasures. So many qualifications can be made about my above post – but suffice to say, I think even very old (table) wine should still show a modicum of fruit. See my recent post about Kanonkop Pinotage 1997 for evidence that I’m not completely a cradle snatcher….

  3. And I’m mincing my words not to say that Boekenhoutskloof Syrah 2008 opened this evening (25 March) was well off where the Cab of the same vintage is…

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