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Thorne & Daughters Tin Soldier 2018

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Thorne & Daughters winemaker John Seccombe reminds us all that come the 2018 vintage, the winelands were “in the teeth of the drought” with yields depleted by as much as 50% in some cases. Conditions were evidently challenging but his new releases are as smart as ever.

Thorne & Daughters Cat’s Cradle 2018
Approximate retail price: R305
From 39-year-old Swartland Chenin Blanc vineyard. A hint of reduction to go with peach, apricot and almond paste. Lean and savoury on the palate with an intriguing sour quality. Alcohol: 13.4%.

Editor’s rating: 90/100.

Thorne & Daughters Paper Kite 2018
Approximate retail price: R350
From a 54-year-old Swartland Semillon and Semillon Gris vineyard. Subtle notes of lime, green melon and oatmeal on the nose. The palate is very much about mouthfeel rather than flavour – this wine being pleasantly smooth textured with coated acidity, the finish gently savoury. Moves languorously through the mouth. Alcohol: 13.43%.

Editor’s rating: 91/100.

Ready for action.

Thorne & Daughters Tin Soldier 2018
Approximate retail price: R305
From a six-year-old vineyard of Semillon Gris established using material from the Paper Kite site. 70% skin fermented for some 10 days and 30% whole-bunch pressed. A gorgeous and exotic nose of floral perfume (frangipani, honeysuckle), table grape, papaya and a whiff of marmalade. Great fruit concentration, coated acidity and some light grip to the finish. Layers of flavour and great length. Alcohol: 12.62%

Editor’s rating: 95/100.

Thorne & Daughters Rocking Horse 2018
Approximate retail price: R265

25% Roussanne from Stellenbosch and Paardeberg, 22% Semillon from Franschhoek, 19% Chardonnay from Stellenbosch, 18% Clairette Blanche from Stellenbosch and 16% Chenin Blanc from Paardeberg. Aromas of pear, white peach and apple to go with yellow earth and fresh herbs. Pure fruit, zippy acidity and a pithy finish – intense but not weighty. Leaner than 2017 but possessing plenty of intricacy. Alcohol: 13.22%.

Editor’s rating: 94/100.

Thorne & Daughters Wanderer’s Heart 2018
Approximate retail price: R265

34% Voor Paardeberg Grenache, 26% Bottelary Cinsault, 17% Wellington Grenache Gris, 13% Bot River Mourvèdre and 10% Bot River Syrah. A subtle and pretty nose of red fruit, rose and white pepper while the palate a little more substantial than previous vintages with lovely freshness and fine tannins. Alcohol: 12.89%.

Editor’s rating: 91/100.

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