Regular readers of this blog will know that I’m generally sceptical of local Pinot Noir (if you’re looking for relatively light, fresh reds, then you’re better served by Cinsaut or Grenache) but that’s not to say there are absolutely no decent examples out there. My favourite producers are Crystallum, Newton Johnson and Paul Cluver and the maiden vintage 2013 from Donkiesbaai, the boutique brand owned by Rust en Vrede’s Jean Engelbrecht, is pretty smart, too.
The wine is classified as Wine of Origin Ceres Plateau, grapes sourced from what is apparently the highest Pinot block in the country on the Witzenberg Mountains. On the nose, there’s red and black cherry, a pretty floral note reminiscent of roses and a hint of spice. It’s full but balanced – a dense core of fruit, really lovely acidity and fine but still grippy tannins. It’s still extraordinarily primary but there’s a proper vinosity about it – not sweet and soft like so many of its peers. Well worth the R200 a bottle asking price.