Francis wines maiden releases
By Christian Eedes, 11 August 2023
Burton Francis is a former professional rugby union player who participated locally from 2008 to 2013 before joining French side Agen until 2017 when injury ended his career. During his time in France, he decided to do his MBA in Wine & Spirits Business at the Burgundy School of Business and he has now launched his own wine brand, in collaboration with Kevin Grant of Ataraxia wines. Tasting notes and ratings for the maiden releases as follows:
Francis Chardonnay 2022
Grapes from Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge. Matured for nine months in older 500-litre barrels. The nose shows citrus and flinty reduction plus hints of vanilla and oatmeal while the palate has excellent depth of fruit, big acidity and a saline finish. Pure and powerful with a sweet ‘n sour tanginess to it. Alcohol is 13.6%.
CE’s rating: 95/100.
Francis Pinot Noir 2022
Grapes from Hemel-en-Aarde Ridge. 20% whole-bunch fermentation before maturation lasting 11 months in older 228-litre barrels. Red and black berries, intense musk, mushroom, herbs and spice on the nose while the palate has good fruit weight, bright acidity and some light grip to the finish. Forceful and direct, alcohol is 13.6%.
CE’s rating: 92/100.
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