Eagles’ Nest Shiraz 2012



Stuart Botha, winemaker at Eagles’ Nest in Constantia, says his Shiraz 2012 is the best wine he’s ever made and given his fine track record with the variety, his comment does heighten expectations just a little.

Because of Eagles’ Nest’s location in relatively maritime Constantia, you might be inclined to expect the Shiraz to be something light and understated but actually the wine is always quite big and sleek and the 2012 is no exception. Matured for 16 months in French oak, 50% new, it has an alcohol of 14.5%.

The nose shows red and black, plenty of pepper and spice and an elusive fynbos top note. There’s great intensity of flavour on the palate – super concentration, fresh acidity and firm but fine tannins before an extraordinarily long finish. The extraction has been handled really well – there’s shape and form here to go with all that pure, deep fruit.

Tasting the wine, I was on the verge of calling it “damn sexy” but decided that sells it short and opted instead for “statuesque” and while it is most striking, I’m not sure it represents a huge advance on the possibly more lithe 2011. In any event, this remains one of South Africa’s foremost examples of the variety. Wine Cellar price: R250 a bottle. Score: 94/100.

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  1. Marthelize TredouxApril 23, 2015 at 11:52 amReply

    Delighted to hear that about the 2012, I was at the farm the week before it was released so haven’t tasted it yet. I adored the 2010, I still have a few precious bottles of it on the wine rack. Time to stock up before it starts winning awards and gathering stickers then? ;)

  2. Angela lloydApril 23, 2015 at 11:17 amReply

    I tasted this wine with Stuart last October and had much the same impressions as yours, Christian. So I’m delighted you like it too. Despite its already expressive fruit, I think it will take longer to relax, the full textural richness to unfold than 2011, a less edgy vintage to start with. That said, I’m sure it’ll be in the headlines an sell out quickly.

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