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Gabriëlskloof The Landscape Series Cabernet Franc 2016

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Gabriëlskloof in Bot River sees the accomplished Peter-Allan Finlayson incumbent as winemaker having married owner Bernhard Heyns’s daughter, Nicolene. The Landscape Series of wines is made from the property’s  top vineyards but also incorporating grapes from a few old-vine sites from elsewhere in some instances. Tasting notes and ratings for the new releases as follows:

The Landscape Series Magdalena 2017
Price: R275
60% Franschhoek Semillon, 40% Bot River Sauvignon Blanc. 20% matured in amphorae. An exotic and quite heady nose – a fennel top note before blackcurrant, pineapple, yellow peach , earth and spice. The palate is opulent with massive fruit concentration balanced by tangy acidity. Attention-grabbing stuff. Alcohol: 14%.

Editor’s rating: 92/100.

The Landscape Series Elodie 2017
Price: R275
60% Paardeberg, 40% Durbanville. A very forthcoming nose – a herbal top note before orange and stone fruit plus some reduction and yeasty complexity while the palate is rich and seemingly sweet, nicely coated acidity ensuring drinkability. Alcohol: 13%.

Editor’s rating: 92/100.

The Landscape Series Syrah on Sandstone 2016
Price: R350
From own grapes. 40% whole-bunch fermentation. The nose shows a floral top note before red and black berries plus cracked pepper. The palate has a sumptuousness about it with plenty of concentrated fruit and fine tannins. Alcohol: 14.5%.

Editor’s rating: 92/100.

The Lanscape Series Syrah on Shale 2016
Price: R350
From own grapes. 40% whole-bunch fermentation. Red fruit, white pepper and some cured meat-like character. Medium-bodied with pure fruit, fresh acidity and fine tannins, the finish long and savoury. That much more refined and intricate than its counterpart above. Alcohol: 14%.

Editor’s rating: 93/100.

Gabriëlskloof The Landscape Series Cabernet Franc 2016
Pretty as a picture.

The Landscape Series Cabernet Franc 2016
Price: R350
Matured in 500-litre barrels for 16 months, 40% new. An enticing nose with top notes of violets and crushed leaves before red and black fruit, earth and spice (less overtly “green” than the 2015). Lovely succulent fruit, lively acidity and nicely ripe tannins. Absolutely delicious!

Editor’s rating: 93/100.

Mention must also be made of the Bordeaux-style red blend called simply The Blend 2016 and the Syrah 2016 under the standard label, both of which sell for R105 a bottle. The Blend rated 89 on the 100-point quality scale in the recent Cape Bordeaux Red Blend Report and the Syrah is also terrific, being light and fresh with a gently savoury finish – editor’s rating: 90/100.   

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