I’m firmly in the pro-Cinsau(l)t camp but after tasting the Cinsault 2014 from Swartland producer Leeuwenkuil which won the trophy for best niche red variety at this year’s Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show yesterday, I think there is a danger of pushing the variety too far, too fast.
The Leeuwenkuil is a smart enough wine – an appealing nose of red fruit and flowers while the palate shows lovely fruit concentration, bright acidity plus a slight and not unpleasant stalkiness on the finish.
In fact, it’s entirely likeable and at R110 a bottle from Wine Cellar, you can’t accuse of it of being over-priced but it’s not profound. Which causes me to wonder two things: Have we found the very best Cinsaut vineyards yet? and Does the variety perform better in a blend, whether with Cabernet Sauvignon or other Rhône varieties? I suspect the answers to these questions won’t be that difficult to discover but let’s not get carried away in the meantime.