Prescient Cap Classique Report 2021: Top 10

By , 31 March 2021




The second annual Cap Classique Report sponsored by multinational financial services company Prescient is now out. There were 83 entries received from 43 producers and these were tasted blind (labels out of sight) by a three-person panel, scoring done according to the 100-point quality scale.

Top 10

The 10 best wines overall are:



Miss Molly Blanc de Blancs 2015 (Môreson)
Price: R900 per six-bottle case
Wine of Origin: Franschhoek
Abv: 13.14%


Newstead Brut 2015
Price: R245
Wine of Origin: Plettenberg Bay
Abv: 11.83%


Altydgedacht Blanc de Blancs 2019
Price: R220
Wine of Origin: Cape Town
Abv: 12.2%



Canto Chardonnay Brut 2018
Price: R195
Wine of Origin: Durbanville
Abv: 12.69%


Boschendal Jean Le Long Prestige Cuvée 2009
Price: R820
Wine of Origin: Western Cape
Abv: 13%


Villiera Chardonnay Brut 2017
Price: R171
Wine of Origin: Stellenbosch
Abv: 11.88%


Vinevenom Serenade 2015
Price: R460
Wine of Origin: Elgin
Abv: 11.84%


Delaire Graff Sunrise Brut NV
Price: R385
Wine of Origin: Western Cape
Abv: 12.5%


J.C. Le Roux Scintilla Vintage Reserve 2014
Price: R300
Wine of Origin: Western Cape
Abv: 11.23%


Rhebokskloof Blanc de Blancs 2016
Price: R160
Wine of Origin: Paarl
Abv: 12.5%

About the category

Cap Classique is the South African term to describe sparkling wines made by means of a secondary fermentation in bottle, the technique traditionally associated with the Champagne region in France. The wines are given their bubbles by carbon dioxide, a by-product of the fermentation process that is normally allowed to escape.

Which areas are to the fore?

Cap Classique is as much about technique as terroir and no one area is conspicuous when it comes to the best wines (33 of the total line-up falling under the rather broad designation of “Western Cape”).

What does top bubbly go for?

The average price of the 24 wines to rate 90-plus is R293 a bottle and of the Top 10 is R311. Offering the best quality relative to price is the Miss Molly Blanc de Blancs 2015 with a rating of 94 and selling for R150 a bottle.

In-depth analysis

To read the report in full, including key findings, tasting notes for the top wines and scores on the 100-point quality scale for all wines entered, download the following: Prescient Cap Classique Report 2021

Shop online

Johannesburg boutique wine retailer Dry Dock Liquor is offering all wines in the Top 10 for sale – buy now.

Online retailer Wine-of-the-Month Club is offering a six-bottle mixed case selected from the Top 10 – buy now.



15 comment(s)

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    Udo | 31 March 2021

    Not taking this tasting too seriously. Missing too many of the best. I know, when you do not enter etc…
    But I do wonder how much time was spend on tasting them. I know by experience that this cannot be done in one day.
    @sam are you really happy to be in this score with Miss Molly and Rhebokskloof?

    Leon Olivier | 31 March 2021

    Can you please tell which other suppliers entered? I am really missing some stellar MCC’s. And the scores are really low.

    Top Wine SA | 31 March 2021

    Sjoe! Newstead bubbly on a roll… Great showings in Cap Classique Challenge, then Platter’s, now Winemag Report! Go Plett!!

    Jan Erik | 31 March 2021

    Any info about Charles Fox?

    Melvyn Minnaar | 31 March 2021

    Judging bottle-fermented sparkling wine is one of the most challenging exercises – for numerous reasons, including the ghost of ‘real champagne’ hovering somewhere. Plenty of experience comes into play, and I believe benchmarking is vital to counter the limitations of the personal in the clinical conditions of judging a line-up like this. It is sad that some of the acknowledged smart MCCs didn’t come into play here, but at least the outliers make this a fun debate – also given the luxury pricing of some. So nice to disagree.

    Samantha Suddons | 31 March 2021

    Very proud of my first release of the VINEVENOM Serenade. To be up there with some wineries who have been doing this for decades, not to mention are much bigger than my independent “one woman show” ! Well done to all

    Colin | 31 March 2021

    Some seriously low scores there. Did the SA wine industry have an off day or was the panel perhaps the problem? How much time do you guys spend tasting sparkling wine from other countries?

      Tom | 31 March 2021

      Colin, to be fair the ‘Key Findings’ section of the report is worth a read to answer this. Given the range of scores, low and high, score moderation looks good.
      On the panel, Wine Cellar offer up some awesome Champagne tastings and spend a shed load of time curating not only a few big house names for retail, but also directly sourcing and importing the most compelling array of Grower Champagnes to be found in Africa. Plus sparklers from elsewhere. They are incredibly passionate on the category and I doubt you’ll find anyone more qualified to benchmark SA bubbly against international peers!
      I’m guessing Cathy Van Zyl would have been invited onto the panel for her specialist knowledge of the category, which you’d expect as an MW.
      They have it covered.

        Colin | 1 April 2021

        Tom, being passionate about selling wine, doth not make you an expert.

        And again – how much time does the esteemed panel’s tasters spend on educating themselves on the sparkling wines of the world – especially considering the cost implication for drinking fine champagne and Cava. Or english, Aussie or NZ fizz.

        Alas – the same question as always arises – if winemag doesn’t taste internationally, what does its judges benchmark against? The same judges taste on all the panels, and we as consumers are meant to believe they are experts on every single variety and style. Puhleease.

    Erwin+Lingenfelder | 31 March 2021

    The luminaries, why are they not here? Le Lude, Graham Beck, Colmant, Pieter Ferreira.
    Did they even enter?

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