Though Donovan Rall’s first bottling was as recent as 2008, his credentials are now very much established and the question concerning new releases becomes how do they compare to previous vintages.
His white blend, which is typically Chenin Blanc driven with various portions of Verdelho, Chardonnay and Viognier, is always a wine of some weight but the 2015 seems particularly imposing. The nose is quite shy – sniff deep enough and you’ll find hints of citrus, white peach, potpourri and ginger. The palate, meanwhile, shows ripe fruit plus some oxidative character; rich and smooth textured with moderate acidity, it doesn’t leave you wondering. Approximate retail price: R260 a bottle.
His red blend, Syrah with a dash of Grenache, shows particularly well in the case of the 2014. An expressive nose of red and black fruit, some olive brine and scrub. It’s rich and full like this wine tends to be but equally has balance and character. Good depth of flavour, fresh acidity and a little whole-bunch grippiness on the finish. Approximate retail price: R275 a bottle.
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