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Thorne & Daughters Rocking Horse 2014

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Thorne & Daughters winemaker John Seccombe.
Thorne & Daughters winemaker John Seccombe.

A first peek at the 2014 vintage of the Cape white blend that is Thorne & Daughters Rocking Horse. A blend of 35% Chenin Blanc (Bottelary and Swartland), 28% Roussanne (Voor Paardeberg), 22% Semillon (Franschhoek), 14% Chardonnay and 1% Viognier (both Overberg), it was matured in old oak for some 10 months.

The nose is extraordinarily complex – lime, peach, red apple, dried herbs, some pleasant oxidative character and even liquorice! Fantastic fruit concentration – really succulent – and lip-smacking acidity before a wonderfully long finish – dry, pithy, even bitter (it takes courage to leave that kind of detail in rather than polish out). Rendered with care and imagination and I believe a small step up on the 2013, which itself was a knock-out wine. To be released in May.

Score: 95/100.

Thorne & Daughters Zoetrope 2014

New to the Thorn & Daughters portfolio is a single-variety Chardonnay from the same 35-year-old vineyard that supplies grapes for Rocking Horse.

Citrus, blossom, spice but also more oxidative notes of oatmeal biscuit and a little nuttiness. Broad with relatively soft acidity (the wine underwent full malolactic fermentation) before a nicely dry finish.  Idiosyncratic but engaging. To be released in May.

Score: 92/100.

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