Intriguing to drink the single-vineyard Three Pines Cabernet Sauvignon 2016 (total production: 8 399 bottles) from Stark-Condé in Jonkershoek Valley, Stellenbosch next to the standard-label Cabernet Sauvignon of the same vintage (total production: 8 303 six-bottle cases). Tasting notes and ratings as follows:
Stark-Condé Three Pines Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
Matured for 20 months in small French oak, 70% new. Includes 6% Petit Verdot, 4% Cabernet Franc and 2% Malbec. A slight reductive note as well as floral fragrance and crushed leaves to go with black and blue fruit and some attractive oak-derived notes on the nose. The palate is rich and luscious with smooth, supple tannins. Sweet on entry but not too much so, the finish suitably dry. Very accomplished in a modern, upfront style (alcohol: 14%).
Editor’s rating: 92/100.
Stark-Condé Stellenbosch Cabernet Sauvignon 2016
85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Petit Verdot, 3% Cabernet Franc, 2% Malbec and 2% Petite Sirah. Matured for 20 months in small French oak, 30% new. Again a touch of reduction before berry compote and some vanilla. The palate is sweet fruited with soft tannins making it a lot more immediately accessible than its counterpart above (alcohol: 14%).
Editor’s rating: 88/100.
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