The white blend called Saskia that is part of Tokara winemaker Miles Mossop’s own-label range of wines grows ever more intricate. Originally a Chenin Blanc-Viognier blend, first Clairette Blanche and then Verdelho have been incorporated in recent years.
Is the whole greater than the sum of the parts? Most definitely in the case of the current-release 2012 (approximate retail price: R215 a bottle). Consisting of 66% Chenin blanc, 26% Viognier. 5% Verdehlo and 3% Clairette Blanche, the first and the third varieties are from Stellenbosch, the second and fourth from the Paardeberg. Early and late pickings for the Chenin, spontaneous fermentation, maturation for 10 months in old oak.
Probably not a “terroir wine” in the strict sense of the term but rather one which displays immaculate craftsmanship. Very expressive with notes of potpourri, peach, gentle spice and some ginger on the nose. Great flavour intensity offset by zingy acidity – not exactly “elegant” (the alcohol by volume is 14%) but there’s real depth of fruit here. The finish, meanwhile, is very long with a little bit of phenolic grip. Striking rather than beautiful but entirely captivating.