Vriesenhof in Stellenbosch appears resolutely publicity shy and as a result I sometimes forget how satisfying the wines from this cellar are. The approach here is nothing if not old school and what ends up in bottle typically possesses a “noble rusticity” – the sort of thing that will get marked down next to the more precise and clinical in a large competition line-up but provide real drinking pleasure at the table.
Recently the Grenache 2010 (R400 per magnum). From old Piekenierskloof vines, the wine is matured for six months in new French oak and then for a further period of 12 to 18 months in second-fill oak depending on vintage.
Red and black berries and spice, lovely fresh acidity and fine, grippy tannins. Not just intensity of fruit but intensity of flavour before a long, savoury finish. Very much to its credit is how tight it currently seems and it should provide good drinking at least until 2020.