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Bonnievale Limited Release Cabernet Sauvignon 2017

By , 6 December 2019

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Bonnievale Wines is today a company with approximately 100 growers farming 1 650ha of vineyard with four crushing facilities. Chairman Anton Smuts is also chairman of VinPro, CEO John Barnardt was previously head of Nedbank’s Wine Industry Portfolio and Carina Gouws, formerly a Distell board member in charge of global marketing and Callie van Niekerk, formerly winemaking general manager at that same company, consult.

If the above team can’t revamp a set-up consisting of former co-ops into a viable business entity, then no-one can. The portfolio is being made over and at the top now sit two Limited Release wines. Tasting notes and ratings as follows:

Bonnievale Limited Release Chardonnay 2019
Price: R95
No malolactic fermentation. Matured on staves for five months. A subtle nose of blossom, pear and citrus before a palate that is light-bodied, clean and fresh. Pleasant enough but a bit innocuous. Total production: 6 300 bottles.

CE’s rating: 88/100.

Dress for success.

Bonnievale Limited Release Cabernet Sauvignon 2017
Price: R140
Matured for 18 months in French and American oak, 50% new. A barrel selection from wines made from grapes supplied by 39 different growers. Red and black fruit plus some very slight floral perfume. Medium bodied with good fruit definition, fresh acidity and fine tannins. Understated and rather elegant, it bears mentioning that a prototype of this wine, the Barrel Select 2015, won the trophy for best value gold medallist at this year’s Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show.

CE’s rating: 91/100.

Find our South African wine ratings database here.

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  • Kwispedoor6 December 2019

    Why the staves on the Chardonnay? I can understand if a high-volume cheap wine gets some staves treatment if you need to enhance a wine that wouldn’t taste like much otherwise. But I don’t really think “Limited Release” and “staves” should ever meet in the same context. The low price is commendable, but why not just put the wine into used barrels? I feel like some of the bigger, more corporate wine-making setups are often more preoccupied with adding flavours than retaining them…

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