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Osbloed Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon 2009

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Two wines...
...with but a single name.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mad about rugby as I am, it was with disappointment that I declined an invitation to the launch of “Osbloed”, a range of wines endorsed by former Springbok prop Os du Randt, the function set to have taken place on 1 June and therefore clashing with the announcement of this year’s Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show results.

The concept was developed by Paarl wine enthusiast Eion du Toit with production handled by Theunis van Zyl of Imbuko Wines in Wellington. There are two wines in the range, a 2010 red consisting of 70% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Pinotage and 10% Shiraz and a 2011 Rosé from Pinotage. So far, I’ve been unable to ascertain much more except that they seem intended as accessible, everyday drinking.

Unfortunately, there seems more to this story than meets the eye. No sooner did news of an Os du Randt-affiliated range of wines break than it was brought to my attention that a wine under the same name of “Osbloed” already existed, a 2009 red blend consisting of 55% Shiraz and 45% Cabernet Sauvignon having been launched in December 2010 by Bertus van Niekerk, a headhunter by profession based in Somerset West (see here).  Here the name is intended to evoke farm life, the label bearing  a rendition of a clay ox with thorns for horns as a child might fashion.

My sample bottle of 2009 was medium bodied in structure with dark fruit and spice flavours, fresh acidity and a dry finish. Appealing if not very complex. The 2009 is now sold out and the 2010 retails for R64.99 a bottle.

Apparently both labels are SAWIS approved, but two completely different wines with the same name? That’s less than ideal.

7 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks for tasting the wine, Christian! I’d love to show you my garage wines of 2011. Iconoclastcally I have fermented a Rhine Riesling dry in a third fill barrel. I also have a Cinsaut from 40 year old bush vines outside Stellenbosch aging in the barrel. The Riesling is bold and the Cinsaut is definitely not shy either (but then neither am I).

    I can be contacted through Facebook (Bertus Osbloed van Niekerk) or Twitter (@Bertus_Osbloed).

  2. The underhanded way Eion dealt with the situation after he learned there was already a wine under the name he intended to release is disappointing, especially since I think he is doing the great prop Os no favour. (PS I am still a fan of Os du Randt, but not of his business partner’s product).

  3. Nothing new in this name as the name refers to a wine from Bulgaria called: Bulls Blood. A red wine to unsurprisingly. It too has little class or cultural merit. I noted with interest that Bertus Osbloed van Niekerk has an iconoclastic Rhine Riesling fermenting in a third fill barrel dry together with a Cinsaut from 40 year old vines outside Stellenbosch – a most interesting blend no doubt – a fragrant Osbloed? Not a shrinking violet.

  4. Thanks Karen

    Shane, please Google “Sangre de Toro”, a Spanish wine made in vast quantities.  There is also a posh version “Gran Sangre de Toro” which I would highly recommend.  

    “Ox Blood” is used to refer to red wine in almost every wine drinking culture around the globe, I was just fortunate that no one thought of putting it on a label before I did.  Also, powdered ox blood was only outlawed by the EU in 1996 as an agent to settle red wine with.  Before that it was used for hundreds of years to stabilise wines ready for bottling.

  5. Bertus. The original bulls blood name originates from the Eger district of Hungary. During the invasion of Suleiman the Magnificent in the early 16th century, displaced Serbs brought the red Kadarka grape to Eger. This ancient variety was used to make the robust red wine blend later known as Bull’s Blood, after the supposed secret ingredient in the wine that fortified the defenders of Eger in 1552. The historical reference being that the wine was used to fortify the defenders of Eder in 1552 against invasion by the turks. The red colour of the soldiers beards made the attackers believe that the defenders drank the blood of bulls. Sangre de Torres is one of the lesser wines made by Miguel Torres in Penedes region of Spain. It is a pleasant drink as are all the Torres wines from lesser to greater.

  6. Found this for your info Bertus. Sangre de Toro is Torres tribute to Bacchus, the Roman God of wine, otherwise known as ‘Son of the Bull’.

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