Single-variety Semillon is not exactly everyday drinking but the best examples are always extremely satisfying – broader in structure and with less aggressive acidity than your average Sauvignon Blanc. At the weekend, two top examples: the Boekenhoutskloof 2008 and the Cape Point Vineyards 2005.
The Boekenhoutskloof 2008 (13 months in French oak, 100% new) showed thatch on the nose and was rich and thick-textured on the palate with flavours of peach and spice – it brought joy to my wine geek heart to find this relatively exotic wine available for R290 a bottle at the ever popular but generally somewhat modest Brass Bell restaurant in Kalk Bay. Score: 17/20 and great with fried hake and chips.
The Cape Point Vineyards Semillon 2005 is a wine of some reputation having won the trophy for best in class at the 2007 Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show. Intricately assembled, 48% was matured in used French oak and the final blend contained 6% Sauvignon Blanc. This wine was not as weighty as the Boekenhoutskloof and showed tangerine flavour as well as just a hint of pyrazine bite. No sense of decline despite being seven years on from vintage but lacking the nuance that winemaker Duncan Savage achieves with his Sauvignon Blanc-Semillon blend that is Isliedh. Score: 17/20.