Ernie Els Major Series
By Christian Eedes, 18 March 2020
The quality divide that so often manifests itself between local Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon is again in evidence in the case of two new wines from Ernie Els Wines in Stellenbosch, these under the Major Series label positioned beneath the premium Proprietor’s tier and above that of the everyday Big Easy. Tasting notes and ratings as follows:
Ernie Els Major Series Merlot 2017
Includes 5% Cabernet Franc. Matured for 14 months in mostly used oak. Initially the nose is rather reductive but later reveals black fruit and olive plus some oak spice. The palate is full although perhaps a bit hollow, the tannins firm and the finish savoury. Sound enough but unexciting.
Editor’s rating: 87/100.
Ernie Els Major Series Cabernet Sauvignon 2017
92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Petit Verdot. Matured for 17 months in French oak, 30% new. A deep and compelling nose of cassis, some leafiness, sea breeze and a touch of boot polish. The palate meanwhile is lean but not too lean, grippy but not too grippy – really nicely observed on the part of the winemaking team.
Editor’s rating: 92/100.
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