From Boekenhoutskloof to Alheit La Colline, Franschhoek old-vine Semillon has been responsible for some of South Africa’s most captivating wines in recent times. Now Jacques Wentzel of Black Elephant Vintners enters the fray with a quite magnificent offering in the form of The Dark Side of the Vine 2015.
Grapes from a single vineyard planted in 1905 in the Bo-Hoek area of the ward, the winemaking involved 24 hours of skin contact before spontaneous fermentation and maturation lasting 12 months in two old 500-litre French oak barrels.
The aromatics are stunning with notes of hay, fynbos, blackcurrant, white peach, yellow apple and naartjie plus vanilla and spice while the palate shows fantastic concentration, fantastic composure and fantastic length. It’s one of the most exciting wines of the year. Price: R385 a bottle.
Editor’s rating: 97/100.
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