Vergelegen in Somerset West receives some 75 000 visitors annually and looks to be gearing up for even more with the official opening of the new Wine Tasting Centre and The Stables bistro-style restaurant yesterday. The former Vergelegen restaurant is busy being transformed into a fine-dining venue set to re-open in October.
Over lunch at The Stables, the launch of DNA 2006, a new addition to the Vergelegen wine range priced at R175 a bottle. The packaging is unconventional, the name rendered in white capitals over an enlarged thumbprint but the wine is as classically styled as anything else which comes out of the Vergelegen cellar.
In fact, the wine is the Cabernet Franc Merlot which was nominated for, but did not ultimately receive, 5 Stars in the 2011 edition of Platter’s. The blend is 60% Cabernet Franc, 25% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Sauvignon and spent 18 months in French oak, 100% new.
On the nose red fruit, floral fragrance, typical Cab Franc leafiness and spice. “Nothing remotely reminiscent of chocolate,” as winemaker André van Rensburg observes. The palate is medium bodied , almost delicate. There’s fresh acidity and the tannins are already very soft so there seems little point in keeping it much longer.
Vergelegen are to be commended for not releasing wines too young as so many of their counterparts do but I did find myself thinking that this particular wine lacked a bit of oomph. Score: 16/20.