Several South African wines are finding themselves amongst exulted company in Wine Advocate’s recently published listing of The Most Memorable Wines of 2011. British wine writer and critic Neal Martin received the South African wine beat for this distinguished publication last year and was sufficiently impressed to have included several South African wines in his list.
In his “More Down to Earth” section, Martin focused on wines that are commercially available and can be considered as good value. Bruwer Raats and Mzokhona Mvemve’s 2008 MR De Compostella made the list, which covered wines from across the globe. Other South African wines to be included were the 2006 Tierhoek Straw Wine, 2006 Klein Constantia Vin de Constance Natural Sweet Wine and 2009 Tokara Reserve Collection Stellenbosch Chardonnay.
After his South African visit, Martin commented on the diversity of the local wine industry and saw huge potential in South African wines. He claimed a 1961 Lanzarac Pinotage as the Surprise of the Year and added the 2010 Ken Forrester Petit Cabernet/Merlot and 2010 Cape Point Isliedh Sauvignon Blanc as the value red and white wines of the year respectively.
“I think it is a really great reflection on the South African industry as a whole to have so many wines included in this list, which will literally be read by wine lovers across the world. To have our wines stand alongside some of the greatest Pomerol estates and iconic Burgundies from France, award-winning Madeiras and Ports from Portugal, Spanish Riojas, German Rieslings and New World Wines from the Napa Valley and Chile should really be a huge encouragement for local winemakers. I certainly feel this is an indication that we’re being taken seriously as a winemaking region and making a place for South African wines on the international wine stage,” mentions Bruwer Raats.