Last night an informal vertical tasting of all the vintages to date of Kanonkop Black Label Pinotage, viz. 2006, 2007 and the recently released 2008. The 2006 is a brooding monster way off drinking at its best, the 2007 quite Pinot Noir-like and already accessible although will no doubt reward further ageing, while the 2008 sits somewhere in between the two, with good fruit concentration and structure, the tannins firm but not as firm as those of the 2006 (grapes from a vineyard planted in 1953 and the wine given 16 months in French oak, 100% new in all instances).
The 2006 was launched in February last year, only 1 000 bottles released, initially priced at R1 000 a bottle while the 2007 was launched in September. In the case of the 2008, only 1 200 bottles of the 1 560 bottles made will go on sale at R1 200 a bottle, sales exclusively via three negociants who have the mandate to buy back stock from willing sellers to sell on to parties prepared to pay a higher price.
This might all sound like marketing spiel but I have to say the few times I’ve tasted Kanonkop Black Label, I’ve found it utterly convincing, a profound wine that is worth its price tag, presuming of course you have the necessary disposable income in the first place.