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Signatures of Doolhof Malbec 2010

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Apparently not too green.

Did the Signatures of Doolhof Malbec 2010 from Wellington property Doolhof deserve to place among the winners at this year’s Top 100 SA Wines competition? While I certainly don’t think it’s at the very pinnacle of what the local wine industry is capable of, it’s quite good in a particular style – it shows ultra-ripe black cherry fruit plus an oak-derived chocolate note and I’d score it 15.5/20.

The really curious thing about this wine is the comments attributed to the judges in the Top 100 official handbook: “Minty, eucalyptus nose with lovely sweet plums and berry fruits. Notes of blackcurrant and mint with a sappy underbelly”.

Now given that the Top 100 panel includes prominent members of the UK wine media (in the form of Tim Atkin MW and Jamie Goode), long critical of SA reds for being too “green”, I’m more than a little surprised that this wine found favour. As for a “sappy underbelly”, is that a good thing or a bad thing?

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