Stellenbosch property Vriesenhof yesterday unveiled new-look packaging while simultaneously announcing that all wines will now appear under one label, the Paradyskloof second label no longer set to feature.
To mark the occasion, a tasting of the full range of current-releases plus some older vintages and a reminder of how resolutely classical in style these wines are. The stand-out wines for me on the day were three vintages of the Chardonnay, to wit the 2009, 2011 and 2015.
The 2011 was particularly handsome. Matured for 10 months in second- and third-fill French oak, it showed citrus and some hard-to-describe bottle-aged character on the nose. The palate showed extraordinary flavour intensity without being weighty, sweet or unduly alcoholic. A wine which doesn’’t depend on fruit concentration so much as balance and its own unique character to make an impression.
Editor’s rating: 93/100.
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